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Trump’s new budget proposes cuts to nursing programs, research and student loan cancellations


Budget cuts threaten both directly and indirectly the training of the future nursing workforce.

Trump’s proposed budget for 2021–A Budget for America’s Future – is a budget that plans to phase out certain nursing education programs in the almost immediate future.

The budget makes massive cuts to nursing programs across the country, eliminating virtually all Title VIII Nursing Workforce Development Programs under the aegis of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Department of Education. These programs provide loans, grants, education and training to health professionals, connecting them to key underserved areas.

According to Administration of health resources and services, for the period 2016-2017 alone, their programs provided training to more than 575,000 current and future health care providers and had 8,400 training sites.

How does the distribution of the proposed budget cuts

Nursing Corps Program

The Nursing and Public Health Division has seven different branches that affect nurses and nursing education; of these, the proposed budget would retain only one arm, the Nurse Corps program, which would receive $ 83.135 million. The Nurse Corps program offers up to 85% tuition reimbursement for RNs and APRNs in exchange for a two-year (full-time only) service commitment at a critical shortage center.

Nursing Workforce Development Programs

In addition to preserving the Nursing program, budget cuts would eliminate other branches, including investments in

  • Diversity in the workplace
  • The Faculty of Nursing Loan Program
  • Higher education in nursing
  • Training, practice and quality of nurses
  • Education and training of behavioral health personnel

National Institute for Nursing Research (INNR)

In addition to the direct cuts nursing programs would face, the budget also proposes to cut nearly $ 3 billion from the National Institutes of Health. Much of that would come from cutting the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR) budget to $ 156.804 million, a reduction that could drastically curtail significant advances in nursing-specific research that is only just beginning.

How the budget change affects nurses

Essentially, in addition to eliminating the actual training programs that offer nurses and APRNs the opportunity to receive training, the cuts could also reduce training opportunities. For example, as part of a 7.8% reduction from the Department of Education, the lifetime loan limit limit for PLUS student loan programs would be lowered, meaning that even fewer students could access higher education.

The budget also completely eliminates the Civil Service Loan Remission Program and Graduate Assistance Program in Areas of National Need (GAANN), which many nurses, along with others working for government and in the nonprofit sector, have been able to use to fund their education and continue to serve communities in need.

Trump’s vision for healthcare reform

According to CNN, the cuts are also part of a broader “vision for health care reform” the president envisions, which also includes deep cuts to eligibility programs such as,

  • Medicaid
  • Food vouchers
  • Affordable Care Act.

Medicare, for the elderly, is largely left untouched, except for some changes on the provider side. And while no one can predict with certainty what the outcome of such changes will be, CNN predicts that “millions” will lose their insurance coverage, which could lead to increased emergency room visits, increased chronic disease costs and more. even more long-term health care. effects of food insecurity.

$ 7 billion for mental health and opioid abuse

The president also pledged to increase Medicaid funding by $ 7 billion over a decade for programs to fight mental health and opioid abuse.

What nurses say

As the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Explained in a press release, many leading nursing organizations believe the proposed budget cuts undermine the federal government’s commitment to developing a nursing workforce that will be adequately prepared to meet the needs of a care landscape evolving health.

“Investments in academic nursing and the workforce are needed to ensure that nurses trained today are ready for the challenges of tomorrow,” said Dr. Deborah Trautman, President and CEO of AACN, in the press release. “The proposed cuts would seriously hamper the ability of the nursing profession to train and retain a skilled workforce.

“Federal funding for Title VIII nursing workforce development programs is critical to our nursing schools, our students and the profession. Without adequate funding for these programs, the health and well-being of all Americans will suffer, ”Dr. Ann Cary, AACN Board Chair, added.