Student nurses learning in a hospital

Funding for healthcare courses

This page explains the funding available to you if you are a new student starting a healthcare course at UWE Bristol after 1 September 2017. This section is an overview of the funding changes announced by the government following a major review of the student funding system.

Please be aware that the government has not yet outlined all the details, which may not be known until spring or summer 2017. Further information can be found on the Council of Deans for Health website and on the Government website at Gov.UK.

Funding for new students beginning healthcare courses

From 1 September 2017, new students starting any of the following courses at UWE Bristol will need to apply for maintenance and tuition fee loans: Nursing (adult, children’s, learning disabilities and mental health), Midwifery, Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Radiotherapy and Oncology and Diagnostic Imaging.

Which students are affected?

The changes will affect UK and EU students who are starting their healthcare course after 1 September 2017.

The changes will also affect students who started a Foundation year in a Health Professions course in 2016/17. These students will be funded under the new funding regime when they move onto the healthcare course in 2017/18 after the foundation year.

Funding for students who start their healthcare courses before 1 September 2017

The changes will not affect students who start their healthcare courses prior to 1 September 2017 and are continuing on their courses in 2017/18. In this case, your funding will remain the same. Please view our funding for healthcare courses 2016-17 information.

What funding will be available to new students starting a healthcare course in 2017/18?

From September 2017, funding for tuition fees and living costs will no longer be provided by the NHS Bursary Services Authority for new UK or EU students studying in England.

The funding will instead be provided by Student Finance England, Student Finance Wales, Student Finance ni (for Northern Ireland) and the Student Awards Agency for Scotland.

English and Welsh students

The information below refers to the funding that will be provided by Student Finance England. It also refers to the funding that is likely to be available from Student Finance Wales, although some of the specific details have yet to be confirmed.

Scottish and Northern Irish students

Scottish and Northern Irish students will receive a slightly different package of support than that described on this page. Further details be available later on in 2017 from:

Further information about funding

Money to pay tuition fees

The tuition fees for 2017/18 are £9,250 per annum. Non-Welsh UK and EU students can apply to Student Finance for a tuition fee loan that is paid directly to the University. Welsh students can apply for a fee loan of £4,296 and a fee grant of £4,954.

Money for living costs

UK students can apply to Student Finance for living cost support that is significantly higher than the previous level of NHS-funding that was available under the old NHS Bursary scheme in 2016/17. For example, the maximum amount that a Midwifery student received for maintenance under the old NHS bursary scheme in 2016/17 was £7,815 (of which £2,324 was repayable). Under the changes to funding, that student would receive a loan of up to £9,780.

Welsh students can also apply for living costs support that is significantly higher than the previous level of NHS-funding. Using the same example above, under the proposed changes the maximum amount that a Midwifery student would receive for maintenance would be a Welsh Assembly Learning Grant of up to £5,161 and a loan of up to £6,142.

Will I receive more money while I study?

Compared to the old NHS Bursary scheme, you will receive approximately 25% more money while you study. The funding from the NHS has not increased significantly for eight years. This causes financial hardship and in particular, the NHS Childcare Allowance has not kept up with the rising cost of childcare for many years.

English students

  Old NHS Bursary Scheme in 2016/17 Funding in 2017/18 Student Finance England
Tuition Fees   Paid by the NHS Fee loan of £9,250
Maximum living cost funding for students living away from parental home  Midwifery £7,815 Up to £9,780
  Physiotherapy
Nursing: all types
£7,815 £9,420
  Radiotherapy Occupational Therapy £6,639 £9,240
Additional funding for single parents or disabled students  0 Up to £1,179
Additional funding for students with children   0 £1,000
Childcare allowance for registered childcare costs
one child
£128 per week £155 per week
Childcare allowance for registered childcare costs
two or more children
£191 per week £266 per week

Welsh students

Please note that the figures below are subject to approval by the National Assembly for Wales.

  Old NHS Bursary Scheme in 2016/17 Funding in 2017/18 Student Finance Wales
Tuition Fees   Paid by the NHS Fee loan £4,296
Fee grant £4,954
Maximum living cost funding for students living away from parental home  Midwifery £7,815 Up to £11,303*
  Physiotherapy
Nursing: all types
£7,815 £10,823*
  Radiotherapy Occupational Therapy £6,639 £10,583*
Additional funding for single parents or disabled students  0 Up to £2,580
Childcare allowance for registered childcare costs
one child
£128 per week £161 per week
Childcare allowance for registered childcare costs
two or more children
£191 per week £274 per week

*of which £5,161 is made up of a non-repayable grant.

Scottish and Northern Irish students

Scottish and Northern Irish students will receive a slightly different package of support than that described below. Further details be available later on in 2017 from:

Will there be funding if I’ve already done a degree?

The government has confirmed that students from England who already have a degree will still be able to receive funding from Student Finance to study a healthcare course as a second degree. The government's stated intention is that all previous higher education study will be disregarded and, therefore, will not reduce the funding available from Student Finance to study a healthcare course.

Student Finance Wales have not yet confirmed whether this will also apply to students from Wales.

Is there any non-repayable funding from Student Finance England?

Additional non-payable support for students with dependents includes: the Parents Learners’ Allowance, the Childcare and the Adult Dependents Grants. In addition, Disabled Students’ Allowance is non-repayable. Similar non-repayable funding is available from Student Finance Wales.

Is there any support for travel and accommodation costs associated with attending the placements?

You will be entitled to claim travel and accommodation expenses for costs incurred over and above daily travel costs to university. If additional accommodation is needed to enable you to attend your placement, you can claim up to £55 per night for commercial accommodation, such as a hotel or bed and breakfast, and £25 per night for non-commercial accommodation, such as staying with friends or family.

Student Finance Wales have not yet confirmed whether this will also apply to students from Wales.

How much will I need to borrow from the Student Loan Company?

If you take out the tuition fee loan each year of your course and the full maintenance loan, your annual borrowing will be around £9,877 (Welsh students) and £18,670 (English students), depending on your course, your household income and where you live while you study. Over three years, this loan will total around £29,631 (Welsh students) and £56,010 (English students).

Compared to the levels of borrowing under the old NHS Bursary scheme of £6,460 after three years, this can be a daunting prospect. Please ensure you consider the section How much will my degree actually cost? below when making this decision.

Is interest charged on these loans?

Yes, the maximum interest rate is inflation rate (also known as retail price index) + 3%. Inflation rate is currently 1.6%. This rate is applied during your studies and until the April after you graduate.

After you complete your course, the interest rate will depend on your graduate earnings. The maximum is inflation rate + 3% and the minimum is inflation rate only.

How do I repay these loans?

From the April after you graduate, you will be liable to repay. You will remain liable to repay for a maximum of 30 years, or until the loan is paid off – whichever comes first. However, you only repay when you earn more than the repayment threshold of £21,000. The repayment rate is 9% of gross earnings (ie before tax and national insurance deductions) above the threshold. So as an indication, if you earn £26,000, your monthly repayments would be £37.50. Any outstanding debt is completely written off after 30 years of liability to repay. The debt is not passed on to anyone in the event of death.

Will the loan affect my ability to get a mortgage?

The Council for Mortgage Lenders (the mortgage company trade association) has said: “A student loan is very unlikely to impact materially on an individual’s ability to get a mortgage but the amount of mortgage available may depend on net income”. This essentially means that the overall debt will not be taken into account and this will not affect you getting a mortgage. The only factor which may be considered is the fact that your monthly income will be slightly less due to your student loan repayments.

How much will my degree actually cost?

Even though the ‘price tag’ of £56,010 is a scary prospect, especially when you add in the interest accrued during studies of £5,158, this does not tell you how much your degree will actually cost you. How much you actually repay will depend on the level of your graduate earnings over 30 years and the rate of inflation.

The figures below correspond to the pay scales most common for NHS nursing staff for 2016/17:

Earnings

Repayment over 30 years

Amount 'written off'

£20,000 £0 £56,010
£21,909 £2,454 £53,566
£26,302  £14,315 £41,695
£31,383 £28,034 £27,976
£40,028 £51,375 £4,635
£46,625 £55,350 £660

The higher your graduate earnings, the more you repay. The government’s own estimate is that 60% of students will have student loan debt written off at the end of 30 years.

Where can I get more information on available funding?

Back to top