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May 6, 2024

Building the Next Generation of Healthcare: Insights from April’s Industry Conferences

With projections indicating that more than 6.5 million healthcare professionals will permanently leave their positions by 2026, the urgency for innovative solutions in staffing, technology integration, and patient care has never been more critical.

On a mission to help healthcare systems tackle workforce shortages and build sustainable future-proof strategies, the Stride team spent the last few weeks kicking off conference season and learning from leaders on the ground at Becker's, AONL, Orbis EHE, and SHRMTalent. Here are some of Stride's key takeaways.

Addressing Workforce Challenges

Across the board, discussions emphasized the necessity for innovative staffing strategies that align with value-based care models to enhance patient care quality while managing costs. This need is underlined by a significant staffing shortage, with a predicted critical shortage of 3.2 million healthcare workers by 2026, highlighting the magnitude of the challenge facing healthcare systems​ (American Hospital Association)—and healthcare systems are getting increasingly creative in how they tackle.

Gig Nursing

One innovation is the utilization of “gig nursing” apps, similar to ride-hailing technology, which some of the nation’s largest hospital systems (Providence, Advocate Health) are using to attract nurses. Workers can bid for shifts, with hospitals adjusting pay to match supply, lowering rates for popular shifts, and raising them for overnight or holidays.

Employer-Sponsored Tuition for Acquisition & Retention

At Becker’s, Stride’s CEO & Founder, Tess Michaels, led a presentation on Building Sustainable Talent Pipelines in Healthcare—highlighting workforce innovations at hospitals and healthcare systems across the nation, as well as Stride’s unique approach to building pipelines of net new talent, starting with healthcare students.

Stride’s platform matches employers with talent while they’re still in school, facilitates upfront education financing, and establishes an employment term (avg. 3+ years retention) after hire through customized employer-sponsored loan repayment. Learn more at

Technological Integration in Healthcare

Telehealth and digital transformation are reshaping how care is delivered, improving access, and enhancing both patient and provider experiences. Here’s what we heard are the core technological advancements reshaping patient care:

  • Telehealth: This technology has been crucial for providing accessible care, especially in underserved areas. It allows for remote monitoring and virtual visits, reducing the need for physical presence and thus extending healthcare's reach​​.
  • Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI is transforming healthcare by improving diagnostic accuracy, personalizing treatment plans, and enhancing operational efficiencies. It supports real-time data analysis, aiding clinical decisions and health management.
  • Wearable Technology: These devices are increasingly used for continuous health monitoring, enabling proactive management of health conditions and empowering patients to take an active role in their health.
  • Blockchain: This technology is becoming essential for securing health data and ensuring the integrity of health records, providing a transparent, secure, and tamper-proof system.
  • Interoperability: Enhancing data exchange across different healthcare systems is vital for coordinated care, reducing errors, and improving treatment outcomes through comprehensive access to patient records.

Innovations in Healthcare Education and Training

The importance of continuous education and training was a significant theme across each event. And yet, nursing faculty shortages have severely constrained the ability to meet future needs, with over 80,000 qualified nursing applicants turned away in 2019 due to insufficient resources​, according to the American Hospital Association (AHA).

Systems like Mercy and the University of Vermont Health Network are addressing this head on. Mercy’s leadership in the virtual nursing space has enabled them to support junior nurses delivering in-person care with seasoned nurses providing remote assistance and training. UVM recently launched a two-pronged approach—funding upskilling for current employees and utilizing experienced nurses to educate the next generation.

We love seeing innovations like these—and envision Stride’s sustainable pipelines of new talent as a crucial part of a sustainable workforce strategy that complement initiatives like these, acting even earlier to help healthcare systems tackle the problem head-on.


As we reflect on this season's healthcare conferences, it's evident that Stride's commitment to innovative solutions in healthcare education and talent retention is more crucial than ever. From discussions on integrating AI into patient care to our own initiatives in matching employers with talent still in school, Stride is at the forefront of redefining how healthcare staffing needs are met.

Stride's model not only facilitates upfront education financing but also ensures long-term retention, which is critical in an industry facing severe workforce shortages. As we move forward, we invite healthcare systems looking to revolutionize their talent acquisition and retention strategies to partner with us.

Let's think big, think bold, and drive meaningful change in healthcare together.

Learn more about how we can together build more sustainable futures in healthcare at, or book a 1:1 with us today!

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