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Scottish student nurse and midwife bursaries rise to £10,000

  • 7 Comments

Nicola Sturgeon has today announced plans to increase bursaries for nursing and midwifery students in Scotland.

The country’s first minister said students studying these courses will be able to receive a grant of £10,000 per year by 2020-21 to help cover accommodation and living expenses during their studies.

“This announcement should shame the government in England who have taken away bursaries for student midwives”

Suzanne Tyler

As a result of the move, the bursary available in Scotland is swelling from the current £6,578 per year in a three-stage process.

Nursing and midwifery students with care experience will receive a bump to £8,100 this financial year. Those without care experience will enjoy the same £1,522 uplift in 2019-20.

From 2020-21, every student nurse and midwife will receive a bursary of £10,000 per year, regardless of care experience.

“This extra funding will help make studying nursing or midwifery easier for those who want a career in our health service”

Nicola Sturgeon

The English government removed bursaries for nursing and midwifery students in 2017 in favour of a loan system.

Ms Sturgeon said: “We know the value of our NHS staff and we know the value of our health service. This extra funding will help make studying nursing or midwifery easier for those who want a career in our health service.”

Commenting on the announcement made by the first minister, Theresa Fyffe, director of the Royal College of Nursing in Scotland, said the Scottish government had listened to calls from the college for fairer funding for students and responded with a bursary that will “truly support” them while they study.

“The increased bursary is an important step in valuing those who choose to nurse and in making nursing an attractive career,” said Ms Fyffe.

“All of the nursing students who will benefit from this new bursary will enter the profession with one aim – to provide safe, high quality care for each and every one of their patients,” she said.

“The increased bursary is an important step in valuing those who choose to nurse”

Theresa Fyffe

She added: “Today’s announcement is a clear and welcome indication from the Scottish government that they are listening to the needs of nursing.”

Suzanne Tyler, executive director for services to members at the Royal College of Midwives, which has been lobbying for bursary increases in Scotland, welcomed the announcement.

She said: “The announcement is simply great news for student midwives in Scotland, and those thinking of becoming a midwife there.

“It frankly should shame the government in England who have taken away bursaries for England’s student midwives, who also have to pay tuition fees,” she said. “This leaves them tens of thousands of pounds in debt when they qualify.

“This is even more worrying given the large shortage of midwives in England, and sits at odds with the government’s commitment to bring 3,000 more midwives into the NHS in England,” she added.

Ms Tyler said the RCM was repeating its call to the English government to reinstate midwifery student bursaries in light on the move made in Scotland.

  • 7 Comments

Readers' comments (7)

  • And why is it that England no longer have a bursary?

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  • It is imperative that England take stock of how they view the training needs of our future nurses. Taking away the bursery is not only reducing the student intake which impacts significantly upon our patient care moreover, it undermines the nursing profession. Pre Florence and Seacole nurses were viewed poorly, the image then changed bringing a professional stance. This appears to be reverting back.

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  • It is imperative that England take stock of how they view the training needs of our future nurses. Taking away the bursery is not only reducing the student intake which impacts significantly upon our patient care moreover, it undermines the nursing profession. Pre Florence and Seacole nurses were viewed poorly, the image then changed bringing a professional stance. This appears to be reverting back.

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  • can i move to a course in Scotland?

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  • I think anyone wanting to train as a nurse should move to Scotland. We are obviously valued there. I trained in the 1970 and 80's so was paid as a student . I hate to see the way todays students are treated. No wonder they are turning their backs on the profession.

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  • I have just started my masters degree as a student nurse in England. No student bursary. I have to take a loan and tuition fees this amounts to £18,000 per year- £36,000 for me ! but a lot more for the BSC students.

    They have started a new initiative this year by taking on Health Care Assistants and letting them do their nurse training whilst working as a HCA. this is paid. I don't know why they can give all student nurses a basis wage whilst they are in placement. It is still a 40 hour week and 28 weeks a year. Our Country are not only not paying student nurses in placement. But are more or less charging us to study.

    I think this country need to rethink and start giving us the bursary again or at least pay all student nurses the basic rate or pay whilst in placement.

    Many thanks for listening.
    Trish

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  • Weak and sycophantic "leadership" has allowed this to happen in England Hopefully the new Chief Nurse when appointed will fight for our profession
    and stop it being undermined and undervalued.

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