President Proposes Increased Funding for Nurse Loan Repayment & Scholarship Programs

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    AACN Applauds the President's FY 2010 Budget Request

    President Proposes to Increase Funding for Nurse Loan Repayment and Scholarship Programs from $37 Million to $125 Million

    WASHINGTON, DC, May 7, 2009 - Today, President Obama released his FY 2010 Department of Health and Human Services Budget that provided specific details on the funding levels he has proposed for nursing education and research programs. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) is thrilled that the Administration provided $263 million for the Nursing Workforce Development Programs (Title VIII of the Public Health Service Act) and $144 million for the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR).

    The proposed funding for Title VIII programs represents a 54% increase over the FY 2009 level of $171.03 million. The greatest increase was awarded to the Nurse Loan Repayment and Scholarship Programs, which received $125 million, a 238% increase over last year’s funding level. The Nurse Faculty Loan Program received $16 million, a 39% increase over the FY 2009 level of $11.5 million.

    “President Obama is a true champion for nursing. This proposed funding allocation marks a historical point for nursing education, recruitment, and retention,” said AACN President Fay Raines. “If the President’s request passes Congress, it would be the highest allocation these programs have received since created in 1964. AACN will work diligently with our top nursing advocates in the House and Senate to see this funding level enacted.”

    The President’s request would offer significant relief to help alleviate the 11-year national nursing shortage that is projected to grow in the coming years. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), nursing is the nation’s top profession in terms of projected job growth with more than 587,000 new nursing positions being created through 2016. The demand for nurses will continue to grow as the baby boomer population ages, experienced nurses retire, and the need for primary and specialty health care intensifies. BLS projects that more than one million new and replacement nurses will be needed by 2016.

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    TuTonka, Chapis, Multicollinearity, and 4 others like this.

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  2. 30 Comments...

  3. 4
    Who's going to pay for it?

    As an American taxpayer, I am against ALL increases in spending, including this. Where does it stop? I'm afraid to speculate.
    MedSurgeMess, Pierrette, lindarn, and 1 other like this.
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    Who's going to for it if the president doesn't do this?
    I'd rather pay for this with my taxes than with the lives of patients neglected because they're aren't enough nurses.
    It's great to see such a commitment to nursing education!
    MedVision, TuTonka, Euskadi1946, and 13 others like this.
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    This is a positive thing and I think it is great. This will lead to more citizens being able to afford nursing school and will lead to more jobs all around. I think it is great. Investing in education is wonderful. I think that this money would be wisely spent in the nursing programs and student nurses.
    Krither, Chapis, herring_RN, and 3 others like this.
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    This is purely wonderful that he feels such a strong commitment to the nursing profession. Maybe we are finally going to get our voices heard...this deserves a whoop and a holler of THANKS. Our profession needs to be recognized as that-a profession of loving, dedicated, smart, and caring individuals and this may lead the trend!!! Finally, someone realizes how important (and needed) we are to the lives of our fellow citizens.
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    Quote from VORB
    Who's going to pay for it?

    As an American taxpayer, I am against ALL increases in spending, including this. Where does it stop? I'm afraid to speculate.
    I understand your thoughts, I don't realy like increases in spending either but I think for this particular expenditure I agree with President Obama. I guess my thought is that I would rather spend more now and know that later on when I am hospitalized someday I will feel better knowing that there are enough nurses to help take care of me. I think we need to be really careful about our spending but its going to take a while to fix our economy after Bush ran it into the ground over the course of 8 years.

    Krither, flightnurse2b, Chapis, and 6 others like this.
  8. 10
    I think the idea is great however it appears that there is no nursing shortage. Tons of new grads are posting how they can't get jobs. Perhaps a better approach would be to make nursing a more attractive profession with better working conditions.
  9. 4
    Maybe I'm missing something here. But it seems to me that the shortage in nursing is not that people cannot afford nursing school. Or not even that nurses can't afford to go BACK to school to become instructors. We're turning away qualified applicants in droves who have a way to pay for their education. The bottleneck is the lack of instructors. And yes, I saw something about nursing education 'loans'. Okay. but what we need to do is pay educators more. If a nursing instructor made as much as a floor nurse, the nursing programs would get more qualified instructors. Then they could take on more students, and turn out more nurses. Of course, the nursing programs can't AFFORD to pay more for instructors. Nursing school isn't a big money maker for colleges. Rather the reverse.

    So how does this money address that? I'm confused.
    LockportRN, hope3456, AtomicWoman, and 1 other like this.
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    Have to say I agree w/ you, Halinja. It's a nice thought, but most schools in my area are operating @ full capacity and cannot expand because they cannot find nor pay instructors. I've thought about it, but I'd much rather work 24 hrs/week weekend option and be able to pay my bills than work twice that for less money.
    LockportRN, AtomicWoman, and lindarn like this.
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    I would also bet it will only benefit new nurses and not some of the nurses who are in their forties and still paying off their loan. In fact, the funding that usually is made available for these deals is usually trivial and still cheaper than hiring a more experienced nurse.
    LockportRN, TuTonka, I love my cat!, and 2 others like this.

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