BMA highlights strain of new top-up fee system
12 October 2007 00:00 in Medical Government/ NHS related news
The British Medical Association has insisted that the new top-up fee system for university is placing a greater financial strain on medical students.
According to a BMA survey most medical students will leave university with ?8,000 more debt as a result of the introduction of variable tuition fees.
The survey goes on to show that the average debt for a final year medical student when graduating will be over ?20,000.
Commenting on the results, Ian Noble, chair of the BMA's medical students committee, described them as "shocking" but not "surprising".
"I have been warning for a long time that variable top-up fees will make student debt much worse. My fear is that these higher fees will put off students from more disadvantaged backgrounds."
The survey found that almost all medical students now have a government loan and over half of students have an overdraft and a credit card to cope with the level of debt.
The BMA is calling for NHS bursaries and other forms of financial support to be more easily available and will also be campaigning against the removal of the cap on tuition fees.
This week, the Guardian revealed research that showed up to a third of parents having considered taking on an extra job or working longer hours in their current one in order to finance their child through university.
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