February 24, 2024 12:33 pm
Oklahoma State Department of Health introduces loan repayment program to address clinician shortages

The Oklahoma State Department of Health and its Office of Primary Care recently launched a loan repayment program through a grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The program, known as OK Health Corps, is aimed at providing financial support for health professionals working in shortage areas in the state.

The OK Health Corps program offers awards of up to $50,000 to eligible health professionals in the fields of primary care, mental health, and dental health. To be eligible, recipients must commit to two years of service in community facilities certified under the National Health Services Corps, a federal program that supports providers through loan repayment. These facilities must be located in designated health professional shortage areas and must fill out a site agreement.

Mental health and substance use disorder specialists receive priority, and depending on available resources, additional providers in other disciplines will also be considered. Amounts awarded will not exceed the outstanding balance of qualified educational loans. Recipients must also sign a contract with the State Department of Health, committing to either full- or part-time service with a minimum of 45 weeks per service year.

Jana Castleberry, the Director of the Office of Primary Care stated that “The goal of this program is to incentivize healthcare professionals to practice in areas where they are needed most.” The OK Health Corps program offers an excellent opportunity for healthcare professionals looking to make a difference while also receiving financial support for their education loans. Applicants can apply for the program through the department’s website today!

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