There are a range of financial options for those studying for a career in the health industry. This includes NHS funded courses, Social Work Bursaries, maintenance grants and more.

2017 Entry

You may have seen that some changes to the funding and financial support of students accessing Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professionals (AHP) programmes such as Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy & Diagnostic and Therapeutic Radiography, were announced in the Spending Review in November 2015. This information is to offer you clarification on what this currently means.

This information is based on the understanding provided by The Council of Deans for Health and may be subject to change as further details are released by the government but the current situation is as follows:

What is changing?

From 2017/18, new students studying nursing, midwifery and AHP pre-registration courses (which lead to qualification with one of the health professional regulators) will take out loans like other students, rather than getting an NHS bursary.

If I am already a student, does this affect me?

No. This change is for new students starting Autumn 2017 onwards.

I am applying for 2016/17, does this affect me?

No, if you are applying for a place on an undergraduate nursing, midwifery or AHP course that starts in Autumn 2016 or the Spring 2017 (for the BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing), the changes will not be applicable to you (for further information see below). This change will happen from the academic year that starts in Autumn 2017.

2016 Entry

Some courses come with NHS funding for health students looking for 2016 entry, which means all of your tuition fees will be covered by the NHS. Definitely worth considering if you’re interested in the following:

  • Radiography
  • Nursing
  • Physiotherapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Midwifery

Not only that, but if you’re a UK or EU student, you could also be eligible for the following benefits:

  • a £1,000 non-income assessed, non-repayable grant
  • a means-tested bursary
  • a reduced rate of student loan.

More information on student loans can be found on our Undergraduate finance page.

Once you receive your offer of an NHS funded course, you can make your application through the NHS Business Services Authorities (NHSBSA) website. There you will find everything you need to get started. You can begin your application up to six months before your course is due to start.

The NHS means-tested bursary is based on the income of either your parents or your partner (ie. your spouse, civil partner or the partner you live with). For more information, take a look at the NHS Business Services Authority website, or if you think you qualify, visit the NHS bursary calculator to see how much you could receive.

The NHS can also reimburse your travel expenses when appropriate, meaning you can enjoy the benefits of living on campus without having to worry about being able to afford making it to your placement. This is also means-tested and will appear as a ‘Travel (and Accommodation) Disregard’ on your bursary notice. Further information on this and all types of extra support can be found by contacting our Money Advice team. Further allowances including support for students with dependents can be found at the NHSBSA website.

If your course is not eligible for NHS funding, then you may still apply for a tuition fee loan depending on the type of course you wish to take. Visit our undergraduate or postgraduate finance pages for information on course fees and applying for student loans. 

Social Work

The fees for social work courses can be found below:

CourseHome/EUInternational
BA (Hons) Social Work £9,000 £15,500
MA Social Work £10,000 £12,0001

Annual fee over two years. Total cost is £24,000

It is possible for students of Social Work to receive a bursary to support their studies. The levels of funding available will differ depending on whether you are applying for an Undergraduate or Postgraduate course. You can get full details of applying for this bursary through the NHSBSA website.

Undergraduate students will be ranked against 6 criterion, and postgraduates using 5. These are listed below in priority order:

We produce a ranked, anonymous listing of applicants for internal agreement. If any student has extenuating circumstances, prior to the list being produced, the academic team will be asked to provide mark predictions based on work to date. Names will only be entered at time of submission to the NHSBSA to ensure impartiality.

Whilst this bursary is administered by the NHS, it is different to an NHS bursary for nursing or health professions students. When you are completing your funding application, remember that you are applying for a Social Work Bursary, not an NHS bursary. If you apply for the wrong bursary, you will not award you a tuition fee loan, maintenance loan or maintenance grant, so keep vigilant when filling out your application.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

If you’re interested in taking a CPD in the health sector, then you can find out all about the standard rates for courses on our part-time finance page. If you are not sure which category your course falls under, please contact our Enquiry Centre on 0845 606 1144 or enquirycentre@cumbria.ac.uk