OTTAWA, Nov. 13, 2013 /CNW/ - The president of the Canadian Federation
of Medical Students says federal student loan forgiveness for family
doctors and nurses willing to work in rural and remote communities is a
step in the right direction.
Jesse Kancir made the comment today after Candice Bergen, minister of
state for social development, announced in Winnipeg that close to 1150
family doctors and nurses have received Canada Student Loan
The minister said the response to the federal initiative, first
announced in the 2012 budget, was good news for Canada, ``and
especially residents in rural and remote communities.''
Kancir said it is not surprising there is significant uptake for the
program given the debt load many medical students carry.
However, the Canadian Student Loan Program (CSLP) still requires medical
residents to make payments on both the principal of the undergraduate
loan and interest accrued during postgraduate residency training, he
Many residents consolidate their Canadian and provincial-territorial
student loans into a private bank line of credit with a lower interest
rate, or they take part in a provincial-territorial loan relief program
``These physicians would be ineligible for the new CSLP relief
program,'' Kancir said. ``Consequently, the incentive to practice in a
rural or remote community is diminished.''
Five provinces — British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario and Prince
Edward Island — offer medical residents loan and interest relief on the
provincial portion of the Canada student loan during residency
``It would make sense,'' Kancir said, ``to offer the same loan and
interest relief on the federal portion of the Canada student loan for
medical trainees. This would attract more primary care physicians to
rural and remote areas by removing a barrier to the federal program.''
The Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS) is a national
organization that represents over 7500 medical students at 14 medical
schools across Canada.
SOURCE: Canadian Federation of Medical Students (CFMS)
For further information:
Dominique Jolicoeur, Communications Officer
Canadian Medical Association
Tel.: 800-663-7336 / 613-731-8610 ext. 2038 Cell.: 613-809-5669