Sunday, April 18, 2010

Student Loan Debt

The start of our last block sure feels good. Soon enough we will be seeing patients and interacting with physicians in the community, unfortunately that comes with a price.

Student Loan Repayment Options

Just as we are preparing to file our FAFSA for the next year we received the bad news that there will be a 5% tuition increase! Apparently this figure is low, but it still adds up. The AMA reports that the majority of medical students have more than $100,000 of debt. Ask a student and after performing the math they will tell you that their debt is closer to $200,000 or more. We have no idea how the health care reform will affect future medicine and the financial concerns it carries. From my understanding, it is difficult to be a physician and not be bothered by the monetary repercussions of business. In fact, many practicing doctors are still paying off student loans.

A growing concern is the dwindling number of family practice physicians. For many students the pay alone is a deterrent that promotes interest in medical specialties. Fortunately, there are some specialties that are eligible for loan repayment opportunities. Here are a couple resources worth investigating if you are looking to get that student loan monkey off your back and you are not interested in the military scholarship:
  • National Health Service Corps - Family Medicine, Obstetrics/Gynecology, General Internal Medicine, Gerontology, General Pediatrics, General Psychiatry
  • AAMC - Loan repayment/forgiveness and scholarship opportunities by state
Board Prep Question of the Week
A 6-year-old child is brought by ambulance to the emergency room following an automobile accident. She is covered with blood and unconscious secondary to hemorrhagic shock. Her parents urge the physician to do everything possible, but implore that no blood products be used to treat their daughter. What is the best course of action for the physician to take?

A. Administer blood without delay and contact child protective services
B. Convene an urgent meeting of the hospital ethics board
C. Engage the parents in a discussion of why they hold these beliefs
D. Transfuse blood as needed, explaining the situation to the parents
E. Treat the patient without using blood products, per the request of her parents

Answer & Explanation 


  1. It does all add up and the justification of it is only x% is not good enough, take all the small increases and have a look again. Loans and repayments can certainly be excessive to say the least.

  2. Student loans are loans that are offered to learners to assist in payment of the costs of professional education. The government of the country offers these loans and at a very low rate.

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