Students studying to become paramedics, radiographers and physiotherapists will be among those receiving the new financial support from September.

This is the first time paramedic students will benefit from additional NHS funding while at university.

The funding will be provided on top of existing support, including student loans.

The full list of new and continuing students set to benefit from the funding is as follows:

  • dietetics
  • dental hygiene or dental therapy (level 5 and 6 courses)
  • occupational therapy
  • operating department practitioner (level 5 and 6 courses)
  • orthoptics
  • orthotics and prosthetics
  • physiotherapy
  • podiatry or chiropody
  • radiography (diagnostic and therapeutic)
  • speech and language therapy
  • paramedicine
  • midwifery
  • nursing (adult, child, mental health, learning disability, joint nursing/social work)

The government first announced the new funding in December. It said that all new and continuing nursing, midwifery students and many allied health students on pre-registration courses at English universities will receive a £5,000 maintenance grant each year. They will not need to pay it back.

Extra payments worth up to £3,000 per academic year will be available for eligible students. Each year they could receive:

  • £1,000 towards childcare costs
  • £1,000 if studying in a region that is struggling to recruit
  • £1,000 if they’re a new student studying a shortage specialism important to delivering the NHS Long Term Plan

The shortage specialisms have been confirmed as:

  • mental health nursing
  • learning disability nursing
  • radiography (diagnostic and therapeutic)
  • prosthetics and orthotics
  • orthoptics and podiatry

The government expects the £5,000 maintenance grants to benefit around 100,000 pre-registration nursing, midwifery and allied health degree students every year.

It comes as part of the government’s manifesto commitment to increase nurse numbers by 50,000 by 2025.

Minister for Public Health Jo Churchill said:

From paramedics to physiotherapists, radiographers to speech and language therapists, our talented allied health professionals are the third largest workforce in the NHS and support people to live better lives.

As demand grows, we need more of the best and brightest to join our NHS. I want those who would relish the job of saving people’s lives as a paramedic or diagnosing cancer as a radiographer to come forward to train, taking advantage of this fantastic new £5,000 support package.

Minister for Care Caroline Dinenage said:

We want to support people with learning disabilities to live full, healthy and happy lives. The expertise of learning disability nurses is essential as they provide tailored care that can help people become more independent.

In the years to come we’re going to need more learning disability nurses to provide high-quality care, so I’m delighted that from September all new students will receive at least £6,000 a year to help with their cost of living.

I want to see more people considering a career in learning disability nursing, helping to achieve our NHS Long Term Plan ambition to improve care for people with learning disabilities.

Published 19 January 2020
Last updated 11 February 2020 + show all updates

  1. Added level 6 dental hygiene and dental therapy to the list of eligible courses.

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  2. Added level 6 operating department practitioner to the list of eligible courses.

  3. First published.

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