The Potential Impact of a Recession on Healthcare and Innovative Partnerships

Ben H.

Hatched by Ben H.

Oct 11, 2023

3 min read


The Potential Impact of a Recession on Healthcare and Innovative Partnerships


As the possibility of a recession looms, experts have begun to speculate on its potential effects on the healthcare industry. While some may view a recession as a negative outcome, there are indications that it could bring about positive changes in certain areas of healthcare. This article explores how a recession could slow wage increases, shift labor demand, and potentially benefit struggling healthcare providers. Furthermore, it highlights a successful case study of a partnership between Strive Health and SSM Health, showcasing the potential for innovative collaborations in the face of economic challenges.

Effects of a Recession on Healthcare:

A recession could have a significant impact on wage increases within the healthcare industry. With a decrease in demand for expensive contract labor, healthcare organizations may experience a slowdown in exorbitant wage growth. As lower-skilled employees from industries such as hospitality and food service seek alternative employment, healthcare could become an attractive option. This influx of entry-level workers could help address labor shortages in roles such as food service or housekeeping.

Struggling Healthcare Providers and Potential Benefits:

For struggling healthcare providers, a recession could offer a silver lining. Many organizations have already undergone restructuring, cost-cutting measures, and adjustments to new care delivery models. Layoffs have been common, but this period of financial challenges could present an opportunity for healthcare providers to reassess their operations and find innovative solutions. By streamlining processes, improving efficiency, and focusing on essential services, organizations may be able to weather the storm and emerge stronger.

The Case Study of Strive Health and SSM Health:

One notable success story amidst economic uncertainty is the partnership between Strive Health and SSM Health. Within just 90 days, their collaboration resulted in significant improvements in patient outcomes and cost savings. By focusing on value-based kidney care, the partnership achieved a 10% reduction in total costs of care among high-risk CKD and ESKD populations. Moreover, unnecessary hospitalizations in the ESKD population were reduced by an impressive 48%. This case study exemplifies the potential for partnerships to drive positive change and deliver better outcomes, even in challenging economic times.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace Innovation: During a recession, it is crucial for healthcare providers to embrace innovation and explore new ways of delivering care. This could involve adopting telehealth technologies, implementing data analytics to optimize resource allocation, or developing partnerships with other organizations to pool resources and expertise.
  • 2. Focus on Value-Based Care: Shifting towards a value-based care model can help healthcare organizations navigate economic challenges. By prioritizing outcomes and patient satisfaction, providers can reduce costs while improving the quality of care. Investing in preventive measures and chronic disease management can lead to long-term savings and better patient outcomes.
  • 3. Collaborate and Network: In times of economic uncertainty, collaboration and networking become paramount. Healthcare providers should seek out opportunities to collaborate with other organizations, share best practices, and learn from successful case studies. By leveraging collective knowledge and resources, providers can overcome challenges and find innovative solutions.


While the prospect of a recession may initially seem daunting, there are potential silver linings for the healthcare industry. Wage growth could be tempered, labor demand could shift, and struggling providers may find opportunities for improvement. The case study of Strive Health and SSM Health showcases the positive impact that innovative partnerships can have on patient outcomes and cost savings. By embracing innovation, focusing on value-based care, and fostering collaboration, healthcare providers can navigate economic challenges and emerge stronger than before.

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