Medical Student Grant Bill On Its Way To The House - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Medical Student Grant Bill On Its Way To The House

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(WLNS) - For people who live in less populated areas of Michigan and need to see a doctor they might have to drive two hours to be seen.

 As 6 News Joe Khalil reports lawmakers think they may have a solution that will help patients and new doctors.

Fariah Ahmad considers herself lucky. The second year medical student is only taking out about $26,000 a year in student loans.
"It's a little painful and you have to keep telling yourself it's an investment it's an investment it's an investment,” said Ahmad, medical student.

She says the price alone dictates which medical practice many of her classmates decide to pursue.
"They tend not to practice in things they wanted to practice in or do medicine they want to do because they want to first pay off their debt.”

That might explain Michigan’s shortage of general practice doctors, especially in rural areas of the state. Simply put they do not make as much.
"We want to incentivize our physicians to practice in areas where they need physicians."

State Senator John Moolenaar believes the best way to do that is to help pay their debt.
He says with rising costs of higher education, he's come in contact with medical students who have a quarter of a million dollars in student loans.

Moolenaar drafted a bill that would grant medical students up to $40,000 a year, if they open a general practice in those underserved areas.

He’s hoping the bill will solve two issues for the price of one. The bill passed the senate unanimously and is now on its way to the house for a vote.
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