Government funding for Occupational Therapy students
From September 2020, Students training to be Occupational Therapists at English universities will receive £8,000 with a minimum of £5,000 per year. This is being referred to by the government as a ‘new universal offer’.
All new and continuing students in occupational therapy, as well as degree-level nursing, midwifery, and other allied health students, will be eligible for the funding in England. The plan is welcomed by the Royal College of Occupational Therapists, which has been advocating for proactive measures to safeguard future capacity within the occupational therapy field.
The announcement emphasised the following:
Every student studying occupational therapy in England will get at least £5,000 per year, with an additional £3,000 in funding available for:
- Specialist disciplines that struggle to recruit, including mental health
- An additional childcare allowance to help them balance their studies with family life, on top of the £1,000 already on offer
- Areas of the country which have seen a decrease in people accepted onto some nursing, midwifery and allied health courses over the past year
Accordingly, certain students may qualify for up to £8,000 in total financial aid per year, with everyone receiving at least £5,000.
The new package will add to the Department of Health and Social Care's current support for pre-registration undergraduate and postgraduate nursing students, which already includes money for childcare assistance, funding for students in need, and reimbursement for travel and lodging for clinical placements. The actions will be a part of the next NHS People Plan, which will outline how to reduce job openings within the NHS and ensure the future workforce.
View more information about the Access to Occupational Therapy course.