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Indian health professionals have a number of loan repayment program options through which they can receive financial support. The Indian Health Service (IHS) and the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) support two such programs for health professionals interested in a career in Indian health. Nurses are also eligible for loan repayment through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program.
IHS Loan Repayment Program (LRP)
Many health professionals seek the financial freedom that comes with an IHS Loan Repayment Program (LRP) award. The IHS LRP was created to support the mission of IHS while providing dedicated Indian health professionals with the financial support to pursue an uncommon path.
An LRP award provides $20,000 per year toward the repayment of health profession education loans. In exchange for this support, IHS LRP award recipients agree to serve at an Indian health facility identified as having a staffing need. Your initial two-year commitment can start you on a path to achieving your career goals sooner than you thought possible.
Through the years, I've worked with great people and enjoyed great opportunities. I've worked at the clinical level, the policy level, even the national level – and now I'm teaching. The Public Health Service offers a way to have a fascinating career.”
IHS Loan Repayment Recipient
Visit the IHS Loan Repayment Program website for more information on the program and how to apply for an award.
IHS Supplemental Loan Repayment Program (SLRP)
The Supplemental Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) is an innovative loan repayment vehicle available through IHS and is designed to attract health professionals to facilities that otherwise wouldn't be able to offer loan repayment as an incentive.
This program is supported by specific Area offices and individual facilities and aids in the recruitment and retention of valuable health professionals across a number of disciplines.
Contact the IHS LRP branch office at (301) 443-3396 for more information about SLRP opportunities.
NHSC Loan Repayment Program
The National Health Service Corps (NHSC) offers loan repayment support to qualified health care professionals dedicated to practicing in medically underserved areas. NHSC Loan Repayment Program (LRP) participants also earn competitive salaries from their site and other benefits in addition to loan repayment. The NHSC LRP offers an initial award of up to $50,000 for two years of full-time service when you select a service site with a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) score of 14 or higher or up to $30,000 for sites with a score of 13 and below. Half-time service options are also available.
Visit the NHSC website for additional information.
HRSA Nursing Education Loan Repayment
The Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program, offered through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) helps alleviate the critical shortage of nurses by offering loan repayment assistance. Registered nurses and advanced practice registered nurses (nurse practitioners) are eligible for financial assistance in return for working in a Critical Shortage Facility, which includes all Indian health facilities.
Visit the HRSA Nursing Education website for additional information.