Healthcare Education Funding Reforms


The purpose of this page is to provide information and key facts relating to funding support for students entering nursing, midwifery or allied health professional education programmes on or after 1 August 2017.

The workforce is the single biggest asset in healthcare provision, and healthcare careers continue to offer attractive choices including employability, good job security and continued professional development following qualification. For more information on healthcare careers, please see Health Education England’s Health Careers website.


Funding Support

The funding reforms are designed to deliver a number of benefits towards securing the future healthcare workforce, including:

  • Enabling up to 10,000 additional places on healthcare programmes at universities;
  • Offering typically 25% more financial support while studying; and
  • Enhancing access to undergraduate study for those from disadvantaged backgrounds.


For example, a single student studying on a three year programme would receive approximately £2,000 more funding support per year on a student loan compared to an NHS Bursary.


Supplementary Funding

As detailed in the Government’s Consultation Response “Reforming healthcare education funding: creating a sustainable future workforce”, additional funding elements are being made available. Eligible students may be able to access the following:

• A non-repayable grant of £1,000 per year for students with eligible child dependants;

• Access to exceptional support of up to £3,000 per year for those students in severe hardship; and

• Support for excess travel and dual accommodation expenses incurred due to attending practice placements.

We are working on the detail and processes for these elements of funding and will provide further information to you in due course.


Transitional Arrangements

As also detailed in the consultation response, transitional arrangements have been established for particular programmes. These are:

• Postgraduate students: For cohorts commencing in 2017/18, Health Education England will continue to commission the places and those places will attract an NHS Bursary.

• Dental hygiene/dental therapy students: For cohorts commencing in 2017/18, Health Education England will continue to commission the places and those places will attract an NHS Bursary.

• Part-time programmes: For a capped number of students on eligible programmes commencing in 2017/18, they will be able to apply for  available support from Student Loans Company and will have access to a maintenance bursary that will be administered by the NHS Business Services Authority. 


Stakeholder event - January 2017

On 30 and 31 January, the Student Services team held a stakeholder event at NCVO in London. The event was attended by over 200 delegates from Higher Education Institutions over the course of the two days and they heard all the latest about the Health Education Funding Reforms. The below slides were presented during the event:

Welcome (Power Point)

Overview including presentation from Student Loans Company (Power Point)

Learning Support Fund - Child Dependants Allowance and Travel and Dual Accommodation (Power Point)

Learning Support Fund - Exceptional Support Fund (Power Point)

Student Movement (Power Point)

Transitional Arrangements (Power Point)

Please note that the content was correct at the time of publishing however may be subject to change as the policies are finalised.

Further Information

We have updated our Q&A document with more information about the reforms. We will keep updating this document as and when new information becomes available. 


Useful Links

NHS Bursary Reform Policy Paper

Student Finance (GOV.UK)

Health Careers