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We must unite as a profession to save the NHS student bursary

Nursing student Charlotte Humm explains why the demise of the NHS student bursary will be devastating for nursing students, the profession – and patients

As many of you will know by now, the bursary scheme for students hoping to train to be nurses, midwives or allied health professionals has been abolished. Chancellor George Osborne announced it is to be replaced by tuition fees and loans.

Mr Osborne says the change will mean more nurses. What he doesn't say is it will be devastating for nursing students, who study in a different way to students on other university courses. Half of the nursing course involves the scientific and sociological underpinning of nursing, including evidence-based care that all nurses practise. The other half is spent on hospital wards and in the community, learning the clinical and communication skills that are essential to the profession.

Most people who train to be nurses do not do it for the money, or the accolades. They do it because they care about looking after people. Nursing is a

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