Review eligibility of Paramedic Science students for the NHS Learning Support Fund

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Paramedic Science is the only non-medical health course not eligible for additional funding to cover compulsory costs associated with the course, such as placement travel and accommodation. We are lobbying parliament to reconsider the eligibility of Paramedic Science for the Learning Support Fund and Travel and Duel Accommodation Expenses system available to students on Nursing, Midwifery and the other Allied Health Professions.

 

Prior to August 2016 UK home students studying Nursing, Midwifery and subjects allied to medicine (including Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Speech and Language Therapy) were eligible for a means-tested NHS bursary. Paramedic Science was exempt from NHS bursary arrangements, and instead students studying a BSc in Paramedic Science have always been required to take out a repayable student loan. In 2016 the government scrapped the NHS bursary available to students studying Nursing, Midwifery and the Allied Health professions, and after consultation replaced this with a student loan system whereby students were eligible to an increased loan amount. The government also agreed that a expenses system for travel and duel accommodation required for practice placement would be available to students. However, Paramedic Science (BSc) remains an exception to this system, and students are required to pay for their placement costs out of the standard student finance amount available to them (the same as students on courses that do not require additional travel to placement). This means Paramedic Science students are under significant financial pressure, and often can not afford the additional course costs that they are subject to. We believe funding available to these students should be reviewed by parliament.