The Health Professional Loan Repayment Program encourages licensed primary care health professionals to serve in Washington's critical shortage areas. The program provides financial assistance through either conditional scholarships or loan repayment. The loan repayment portion of the program provides educational repayment assistance to licensed primary care health professionals. Applicants agree to provide primary care health care in rural or underserved urban areas with designated shortages.
In 2014, approximately 100 health professionals worked in underserved areas of Washington as a result of this program. Since 1990, the program has funded over 1,000 professionals serving in 38 Washington counties. Further, according to a recent national survey, over 80 percent of the recipient responders anticipate remaining in their health professional shortage service site for two additional years following their service term.
Healthcare sites apply annually to participate in the program. The eligible site list is posted in January when the provider application cycle opens. The provider may apply and compete for an award at that time.
The 2014-15 application cycle awarded providers up to $35,000 per year for a minimum two-year ($70,000), full-time service obligation. Each additional one-year extension request amount is based on funds available.
The 2015-16 provider application is closed. The next opportunity to apply will be in January 2016.
Eligible professions include:
- Physician (MD, DO or Psychiatrist)
- Nurse Practitioner (includes Mental Health Providers)
- Physician Assistant (includes Mental Health Providers)
- Midwife (Certified Nurse)
- Registered Nurse (includes Mental Health Providers)
- Registered Dental Hygienist
To be eligible to apply, the applicant must:
- Be employed or have a contract to begin seeing patients no later than July 1, 2015.
- Submit documentation of eligible outstanding educational debt (does not include, loans with a cosigner, or loans not in their name).
- Be a United States citizen (permanent residents do not qualify).
- Provide primary care and not specialty care.
- Be employed at an eligible site. Stand-alone urgent care/walk in clinics, specialty care, or placement agencies are not considered eligible sites. The applicant must be a permanent employee of the site.
- Sign a contract to serve for a minimum of two years or pay funds back with penalty (see Guidelines and Terms of Agreement for details).
Note: If you have a Primary Care Loan you are not eligible to apply.
- Agree to serve for a minimum of two years and additional service year-for-year for contract extension renewals.
- Be employed or have a contract to begin employment (seeing patients) at an eligible site no later than July 1, 2015.
- Work a minimum of 40 hours per week (see Guidelines and Terms of Agreement for definition of full time).
- Submit the required Quarterly Service Verification Form and supporting payment history to show funds are being applied to eligible loans.
Information for the application process for the 2016-17 application cycle will be posted after the site application cycle closes in September 2015.
The site application cycle will be open in July 2015 and run through September 11, 2015.
- To be eligible, the site must either be located in a Federal Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or have a HPSA designation.
- The site is required to have an implemented and posted (displayed in an open area of the lobby) Sliding Fee Discount Fee Schedule.
- Previous eligible sites must reapply each year to be eligible to be listed on the current year’s eligible site list.
- If the organization has multiple clinics/locations, each individual site (physical location) must submit a separate application.
- Dental, Medical, and Mental Health applications must be submitted separately.
- The site must be a public or private nonprofit entity located in and providing health services in HPSAs. Per 42 CFR. 62.52, "Non-profit private entity means an entity which may not lawfully hold or use any part of its net earnings to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual and which does not hold or use its net earnings for that purpose." For-profit health facilities operated by non-profit organizations must follow the same guidelines as all other State Loan Repayment Program Sites.
- May apply for multiple professions.
- May apply for both recruitment and retention.
- Must submit the application online by the deadline date.
- Will be notified of the status of their application by email.
The site application must be approved prior to the provider being eligible to apply.
Both the site application and provider application are competitive processes. Not all who apply will be approved or awarded.
For more information, please see the Site Eligibility Guidelines Terms of Agreement.
To be eligible, the site must either be located in a Federal Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or have a HPSA designation with a score of 1 or higher. Find out if your site qualifies here.
The Washington Student Achievement Council, in coordination with the Department of Health, oversees the site application process. To access the online application here. Click on register and follow the directions to register under the column "Students/Parents/Other" and then select "Register as a Health Professional."
If you have submitted an online site application previously, enter your email address and password to login and access your site application. If you forgot your password, click on the link to reset your password. Please note, you will not be able to access the application when the application cycle is not open.
Once you submit your application, you will not be able to make changes. You can contact Chris Wilkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 360-753-7794 to make changes before September 12, 2014. After that date no changes or additions can be made to the applications.