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National Health Service Corps etc........

Discussion in 'Medical Students - DO' started by rellik, Jun 5, 2001.

  1. rellik

    rellik Member

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    Does anyone out there have experience with the NHSC??? I am thinking of ways to plan to pay off med school debt w/out enlisting in the services.

    When they say "competitive salary and benefits", what do they mean? I spoke to them today and couldn't get any possible ranges. They say that in their "Loan Repayment Program" they pay upwards of $25 K per year toward your loan debt, but all funds are taxable. What does that translate into when you look at the actual amount you receive to put toward your loans????

    The time commitment does not bother me, but the ambiguity in the financial aspects of the program do a bit. If any of you could give any personal experience with them or give other "non-military" loan re-payment programs that are out there, i would greatly appreciate it.

    Thanks in advance!! :)
     
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  3. Popoy

    Popoy SDN Super Moderator

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    As far as I understand, you would have to talk about your salary with the HPSA places on their list... So it's more like you have to deal your way through a "competitive salary"....

    I'm not an expert though and am not in the NHSC scholarship yet.... But I hope I do.

    Good luck in getting a response... I've tried several times yet only got a few.
     
  4. nycom

    nycom Junior Member

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    I am a NHSC Scholar. The salary range is hard to nail down. It depends if you do OB, Peds, Med Psych. Where you go (Alaska, California, Iowa...) makes a difference. You can search vacanies at http://www.bphc.hrsa.dhhs.gov/nhsc/Main/new_home.htm

    call the places and see if they will give you a price range. Right now there are fewer vacancies because it is June. Every year thousands of residents "graduate" They all get jobs starting in July. Everyone knows this so everyone starts looking months earlier. There will be many more spots open near the end of the year. Another good person to contact is the the primary care coordinator (or some similliar title) in a state you would like to work in.


    By the way currently the scholarship is taxable. Every year bills are submitted in congress to change this. Every year the bills fail for some reason or another. This can cost you a lot of money (you still save a lot with the scholarship)
     
  5. camel145

    camel145 New Member

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    hey gang,
    i'm awaiting the arrival of the application and information packet. i'll be starting school in the fall and am just learning about the program. so, i'll probably be waiting till next year to apply so that i don't rush to make a decision. when is/was the applic deadline for 2001-2002, or is it a rolling process?
    thanks
     
  6. Popoy

    Popoy SDN Super Moderator

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    camel145,

    WELCOME TO SDN!!!

    The due date was March 31, 2001 for the 2001-02 application process.
     
  7. nycom

    nycom Junior Member

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    Belay my last.

    As of Jan 1, 2002 the Scholarship(except the stipend) will not be taxable.
     
  8. rellik

    rellik Member

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    nycom:

    Do you enjoy the NHSC??? I guess I am asking what are the pros/cons of the organization? In my experience, things always look better from the outside than from the inside.

    Thanks!
     
  9. muonwhiz

    muonwhiz Senior Member

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    Hello, Camel! I am in the same situation as you, and am interested in a scholarship for years 2-4. Where did you get the app? To Scholar who is already signed up, I've heard that the application process for this is a red tape misery. True or false? Fill us in!
     
  10. nycom

    nycom Junior Member

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    I have enjoyed my time so far - of course I am still a student and have not started my pay back time. That may change things. The office staff has been very nice and supportive in all of my dealing with them. Not having to worry about $150,000+ in loans (I go to a private school) makes life a lot easier. The monthly stipend helps cover part of my rent. (I live in NYC so it does not cover all of it)

    They used to have these annual conventions where physicians, PA's & nurses who were doing their payback time came. Alumni (those who have finished their payback time) and current students were also invited. I went and found that most people were very happy. They were great because the alumni were able to pass on many pearls. They did talk about long days, under funded clinics and populations of patients that have many barriers. Some of the alumni have stayed for many years at their sites past their obligations. Most have not. This tells me the jobs may be rewarding but they are difficult.

    My situation is unique, I worked in medicine for 7 years before going to medical school. I am married. I knew from my expierence that I wanted to go into primary care. Even knowing that I find certain specialties very tempting. If you are not positive that you want (not just willing) to go into primary care this may not be the program for you.
     
  11. Popoy

    Popoy SDN Super Moderator

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    NYCOM, Can you do anything about this yearning to do other specialties? Just curious... Thanx in advance :cool:
     
  12. nycom

    nycom Junior Member

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    your free to leave the program and do any specialty you want. You just need to pay back your scholarship. They determine the amount you owe by multiplying every dollar they sent you and your school times 3 and adding interest.

    The other option is to go into internal medicine or peds, do your payback time and then do a fellowship. I have been it is harder to get a fellowship when you are four years out of your residency. Also by then you are used to the life of an attending and may not want the hours/pay of a fellow. However, I am sure that it has been done and can be done.

    One of our surgery classes was taught by a pgy-5 who finished his family practice residency and relized he did not like primary care. He only enjoyed procedures so he went back. Of course he did not have a scholarship to deal with.
     
  13. Popoy

    Popoy SDN Super Moderator

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    Seems like a really big price to pay if one was to divert.... I knew about the times 3 thing....

    Wow, I guess an NHSC Scholar can do a different fellow once they're done with their commitment.... You really have to make sure you want Primary care... otherwise you're pretty much in a bind or spend the rest of life misserable.... Oh well.... I still want the scholarship :D
     
  14. muonwhiz

    muonwhiz Senior Member

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    okay, so where do you get the applications?
     
  15. nycom

    nycom Junior Member

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    call 1-800-793-1547 and they will mail you an application.
     
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  17. FlStudent

    FlStudent Junior Member

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    Could anyone give a rough estimate of the salary range once you start working at a NHSC approved site? What does "competitive salary" mean quantitatively?

    Say for a General practitioner or Family practitioner?
    thanks.
     

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