Friday 27-11-2015 - 16:44
In our response to the Spending Review, we condemned the decision to convert vital nursing bursaries into loans and abolishing the cap on places risks access to healthcare profession
The average age of a student nurse in 28, and 50 per cent of student nurses have children. With a starting salary of £21,692 - and many with caring responsibilities - requiring student nurses to take out loans saddling them with over £40,000 of debt will risk prohibiting access to the healthcare profession. But even if the government is somehow successful in boosting admission numbers, there is a real danger teaching quality will suffer if the system is overwhelmed with 10,000 new students.
Megan Dunn, NUS national president, said:
The axing of bursaries for student nurses is disgraceful. It is crucial that healthcare students are not deterred from courses because of huge loans, especially when many will already have substantial debt from previous degrees. 50 percent of student nurses have children, and will naturally be more cautious when it comes to taking on extra debts.
We will work with key partners including the Unison, the Royal College of Nurses, the Royal College of Midwives, the British Medical Association and others to oppose the abolition of the bursary. You can sign the petition against the decision here.