RECESSION: Healthcare Industry Layoffs

Not even the healthcare industry is recession-proof

By Staff Reporters



According to Kristine White of Healthcare Brew, New York City-based Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), one of the country’s top cancer treatment facilities, laid off 337 employees on Jan. 17 in response to ongoing financial challenges, according to a New York State Department of Labor filing.

The 337 employees, who worked across 14 sites and in multiple departments, represent about 1.5% of MSK’s 22,500 employees. This is a slight decrease from the expected 3% of layoffs announced in November 2022.

“This reduction was necessary to ensure that MSK can continue to invest in the future of cancer care, research, and education for the benefit of generations to come, and every effort has been made to ensure that patient care is not impacted,” spokesperson John Connolly said in a statement shared with Healthcare Brew.

The institution’s operating losses totaled $116.1 million for Q3 of 2022, compared to a loss of $8.7 million during the same period in 2021, according to a quarterly financial report released in November last year.

Factors such as increased patient activity, wages, and supply costs from inflation pushed the system’s operating expenses up by 7.5% from Q3 of 2021 to Q3 of 2022. The cancer center hired more staff in 2022 with the expectation that patient volume would increase, according to the financial report.


Health systems like MSK often reevaluate their biggest expense (workers) when business is down, Lori Kalic, a healthcare senior analyst at consulting firm RSM, told Healthcare Brew.

Just this year, multiple hospitals and health systems have also announced layoffs, including Tufts Medicine in Boston and Integris Health in Oklahoma, according to White.





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