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Nursing students to see rise in bursary, mileage allowance

Move aimed at softening impact of cost of living crisis on students with families
Graduating students at Queen's University Belfast

Move aimed at softening impact of cost of living crisis on students with families

Nursing students in Northern Ireland will see an increase in parts of their bursary and mileage allowance for the current academic year.

The Department of Health in Belfast confirmed that students will see an increase of 15% to parts of the bursary along with a mileage allowance increase of 5%, taking mileage rates to 25.7p per mile for students on clinical placements.

Those eligible could be entitled to between an extra £85 to £612 a year, depending on the elements that they qualify for (see box below).

Health minister Robin Swann said:

Move aimed at softening impact of cost of living crisis on students with families

Graduating students at Queen's University Belfast
Graduating students at Queen's University Belfast. Picture: Alamy

Nursing students in Northern Ireland will see an increase in parts of their bursary and mileage allowance for the current academic year.

The Department of Health in Belfast confirmed that students will see an increase of 15% to parts of the bursary along with a mileage allowance increase of 5%, taking mileage rates to 25.7p per mile for students on clinical placements.

Those eligible could be entitled to between an extra £85 to £612 a year, depending on the elements that they qualify for (see box below).

Health minister Robin Swann said: ‘These moves are an effort to alleviate the impact of the current cost of living crisis on students on commissioned healthcare programmes. My department has been aware of the increasing financial pressures facing students, particularly mature students with family responsibilities.

‘I understand that these increases cannot address the current inflation levels and the general erosion in the value of bursaries but I am determined to do what I can within the limited means available to me at a time when the department’s financial position is seriously constrained.’

Public consultation planned to review current bursary system in Northern Ireland

The increase will be available for those eligible for the dependents’ allowance for spouse or first child, subsequent children and parents’ learning allowance.

Increases to bursary elements

  • Dependents' allowance for spouse or first child: £2,389 rises to £2,747
  • Each subsequent child: £567 increases to £652
  • Parents' learning allowance: £1,125 rises to £1,294

Mr Swann also announced that he will be asking officials to begin work on a draft public consultation reviewing the current bursary system in Northern Ireland.

‘Over recent years the department has prioritised its limited budget in growing the number of nursing and midwifery training places,’ he added. ‘There is a clear identified need to further increase recurrent investment in the number of training and education places across the full range of healthcare professions.

‘We need to ensure that the support provided is effective and affordable. I have therefore asked officials to commence work on bringing forward a draft public consultation document reviewing the present bursary system.’


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