So, our treasury in the UK are considering cutting bursaries for our student nurses and replacing them with loans – see here for the story.
Nursing for many years has been a career that is often a path that mature students follow – a passion for caring that had been put on hold whilst other things (family and life commitments) often take priority. When people come to a time in their life that their personal commitments lessen, often that is the time that they look at getting into the profession.
A major factor of this is ease of access. If a candidate did not have the required qualifications then there are the option of access courses which allow entrance to nurse training. A nursing bursary is given to help support the student through their training AND tuition fees are currently waivered. As career paths go, nursing has access for those who have the passion to work in the field.
Fast forward to the current government’s train of thought…..how many of you who are working as registered nurses would have taken the path if the cost of the path were so great – think £27,000 tuition fees PLUS living expenses. I fear that this might just be enough to put off a lot of potential fantastic nurses.
And with the obvious shortages of nursing staff kicking around our services now…..good move Mr government!
So what do nurses and students alike think of this? Personally, I think this will be a big, big mistake.