Nurses across Pennsylvania will soon learn whether they are eligible for a share of the $55 million that the state has made available to lower or even erase their student loan debt. The Pa. Student Loan Relief for Nurses Program, which combines federal COVID-19 recovery and state funding, will aid selected state-licensed nurses who cared for patients at a Pennsylvania health care facility during the COVID-19 pandemic. Sen. Maria Collett, D-Montgomery County, a nurse, brought the idea to Gov. Tom Wolf last year. Nearly 24,000 nurses applied—far outstripping the fund’s ability to provide maximum debt relief to all of them. In response, funds will be distributed by geographic region and then randomly within each region. The program pays up to $2,500 a year for up to three years to registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, certified registered nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and certified nurse midwives who began working before Dec. 31, 2021, at a Pennsylvania facility.

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