Government officials are currently accepting applications for a program aimed at helping people caring for people with drug use to repay student loan arrears.
The Pennsylvania Department of Narcotics and Alcohol Debt Repayment Program accepts applications from treatment professionals as well as from outstanding student loan debt management professionals.
The $ 10 million program aims to address persistent staff shortages and high staff turnover among physicians who practice drug disorders by addressing high education costs.
“By taking on some of the burden of the cost of education, we encourage professionals to stay in the treatment of substance use disorders and help the people of Pennsylvania who need it most,” said DDAP Secretary Jen Smith.
The average amount of student loan arrears in the Commonwealth exceeded $ 39,000 in 2020, with 64 percent of Pennsylvania college graduates reporting that they have student loan arrears as of 2021. report from the Institute for Success and Access to Colleges, a research organization from Washington.
According to researchers from Education Data Initiative.
Drug and Alcohol Department spokeswoman Stephanie Dugan told Capital-Star that the program could help 100 to 200 practitioners repay their student loans in the Commonwealth.
Practitioners should have a minimum of two years of experience in substance use disorders and should be able to spend two additional years in this area to be eligible for funding. Relevant persons may apply for up to $ 100,000 under the repayment program.
Funding for the program comes from the Opioid Calculations Fund and the Commonwealth Medical Marijuana Program Fund, the department said.
Applications can be submitted onlineand the application deadline is May 26.