#BursaryOrBust: report shows impact of cuts on student numbers

Thursday 09-06-2016 - 17:50

Government plans to scrap NHS bursaries for students on nursing, midwifery and allied health degrees will mean around 2,000 fewer people a year will study for a career in the NHS.

An independent economic analysis jointly commissioned by NUS and UNISON shows the changes will mean even fewer qualified new recruits for the NHS from 2020.

The changes are due to be introduced for students in England from 2017. Scrapping bursaries would mean huge debts for students upon graduation as well as a potential decrease in the number of health courses offered by universities.

Council of Deans of Health

The Council of Deans of Health represent UK university faculties for nursing, midwifery and the allied health professions and have previously called for reform to the current system.

On publication of the economic analysis the Council of Deans published a critique. A response from the report’s authors London Economics is now available.

NUS is urging the Council of Deans to join us in calling on the government to halt plans to scrap bursaries and consult fully and openly on the future of healthcare student funding.

What you can do

1.       Contact your Dean of Health or equivalent about the changes, send them the economic analysis and ask them to raise the issue with the Council of Deans.

2.       Contact your VC, NHS Trust Chief Executive or other senior university staff and ask them to speak out against the cuts to bursaries.

3.       Contact your local MP about the changes and ask them to write to Ben Gummer, Minister for Care Quality.

A full list of resources available for the campaign is on the NHS bursaries campaign pages. If you have any questions or thoughts please contact


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