Health Professions Student Loans, Including Primary Care Loans/Loans for Disadvantaged Students


To increase educational opportunities by providing long-term, low-interest loans to students in need of financial assistance and in pursuit of a course of study in an approved health discipline.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Office: Health Resources and Services Administration
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds)
Program Accomplishments
Not Applicable.
Public Health Service Act, Title VII, Part C, Section 721-735, 42 U.S.C. 292q-292y; Health Professions Education Partnerships Act of 1998, Public Law 105-392.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Any accredited public or other nonprofit private school of medicine, dentistry, osteopathic medicine, optometry, podiatry, pharmacy, or veterinary medicine which provides a course of study leading to a degree of Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine for PCL and LDS borrowers, Doctor of Dentistry (or an equivalent degree), Doctor of Optometry (or an equivalent degree), Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (or an equivalent degree), Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy (or an equivalent degree), Doctor of Pharmacy (or an equivalent degree), or Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (or an equivalent degree) for HPSL and LDS borrowers. Additionally, the school must be located in the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the Federated State of Micronesia. Federally Recognized Indian Tribal Government and Native American Organizations may apply if they are eligible.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Student applicants must display financial need and be enrolled or accepted for enrollment in a health professions school to pursue a full-time course of study leading to a degree as specified above. Students must also be citizens, nationals or lawful permanent residents of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealths of Puerto Rico, the Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the Federated State of Micronesia.
Applicants should review the individual HRSA funding opportunity announcement issued under this CFDA program for any required proof or certifications which must be submitted with an application package. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is not applicable. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedure
This program is excluded from coverage under 2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. Students should apply at financial aid office of school of their choice for assistance in applying for a loan. The school then tabulates requests for financial aid and award loans based on needs of students and available funds.

New applications for this program can be acquired from the Division of Health Careers and Financial Support by calling (301) 443-1173. Annual operating reports serve as the renewal application for current loan recipient institutions.
Award Procedure
Notification is made in writing (electronic) by a Notice of Award. When Federal Capital Contribution funds are available for re-distribution, a Notice of Award is sent to the School's Contact Person notifying the school of the amount of federal funds allocated for loans within program and discipline prior to the beginning of the academic year in which the award is to be utilized. Students are notified by the school’s financial aid office of approval or disapproval of loans at times determined by schools.
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
From 120 to 180 days.
Not Applicable.
Applications are required only for new schools. Annual operating reports are required for renewal.
How are proposals selected?
Applications will be reviewed for completeness, accuracy, and to determine if applicant schools meet minimum program requirements.
How may assistance be used?
Funds on deposit can only be used for loans to eligible students pursuing a full-time course of study. The maximum amount a student may borrow is the cost of attendance (including tuition, other reasonable educational expenses and reasonable living expenses). Third and fourth year medical and osteopathic medicine students may be eligible for additional funding to repay earlier higher-interest educational loans. The interest rate is five percent.

Effective July 1, 1993, to be eligible for a Primary Care Loan (PCL), students of allopathic medicine and osteopathic medicine must meet financial need criteria and agree to enter and complete a residency training program in primary health care not later than four years after the date on which the student graduates from such school. The PCL borrower must also practice primary health care for 10 years (including the years spent in residency training) or through the date in which the loan is repaid in full, whichever occurs first.

To be eligible for Loans for Disadvantaged Students (LDS) students must meet the Health Professions Student Loans (HPSL) criteria and also be from a disadvantaged background as defined by the Secretary. A school must be carrying out a program for recruiting and retaining students from disadvantaged backgrounds, including racial and ethnic minorities and carrying out a program for recruiting and retaining minority faculty to be eligible for LDS funds. In addition, the school must agree to ensure that adequate instruction regarding minority health issues is in the curricula of the school. Health clinics must provide services to a significant number of individuals who are from disadvantaged backgrounds, including members of minority groups and enter into arrangements with one or more such clinics for the purpose of providing students of the school with experience in clinical services to such individuals. Secondary educational institutions and undergraduate institutions of higher education must enter into arrangements with one or more such institutions for the purpose of carrying out programs regarding the educational preparation of disadvantaged students, including minority students, to enter the health professions and recruit such individuals into the health professions. These institutions should also establish a mentor program for assisting disadvantaged students, including minority students, toward completion of the educational requirements for degrees from the school.

Restricted Uses: Indirect costs under training awards to organizations other than State, local or American Indian tribal governments will be budgeted and reimbursed at 8 percent of modified total direct costs rather than on the basis of a negotiated rate agreement, and are not subject to upward or downward adjustment.

Student support through stipends, tuition, and fees is not eligible for support. .
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
The awardee will be required to submit performance reports as well as status-federal financial reports (see the program announcement and notice of award for details for each required report). New awards (“Type 1”) issued under this funding opportunity announcement are subject to the reporting requirements of the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA) of 2006 (Pub. L. 109–282), as amended by section 6202 of Public Law 110–252, and implemented by 2 CFR Part 170. Grant and cooperative agreement recipients must report information for each first-tier subaward of $25,000 or more in federal funds and executive total compensation for the recipient’s and subrecipient’s five most highly compensated executives as outlined in Appendix A to 2 CFR Part 170 (FFATA details are available online at Competing continuation awardees, etc. may be subject to this requirement and will be so notified in the Notice of Award. Cash reports are not applicable. No progress reports are required. No expenditure reports are required. Performance monitoring is not applicable.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. .
Financial records must be kept until such time as agreed upon with the Secretary as specified in 42 CFR 57.215.

Grantees are required to maintain grant accounting records three years after the date they submit Annual Operating Report (AOR). If any litigation, claim, negotiation, audit or other action involving the award has been started before the expiration of the three year period, the records shall be retained until completion of the action and resolution of all issues which arise from it, or until the end of the regular three year period, whichever is later.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory Formula: Allotment of funds based on statutory formula which takes into account the ratio each school's enrollment bears to the enrollments of all schools making application for funds but never in excess of request of school. Under the Federal Capital Contribution method, a school must match Federal Capital Contribution with an amount equal to one-ninth of the funds drawn down.
Matching Requirements: 11% Matching Requirement.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
The time required by a student to complete the necessary course of study leading to a degree and subject to the availability of funds. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Recipient institutions drawdown funds, as necessary, from the Payment Management System (PMS). PMS is the centralized web based payment system for HHS awards.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices.
Headquarters Office
Jim Essel (PCL), Devonaline Horne (LDS), or Hai Le (HPSL), Division of Health Careers and Financial Support, Bureau of Health Workforce, Health Resources and Services Administration, Department of Health and Human Services 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 9-105, Rockville, Maryland 20857 Phone: (301) 443-1173
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds)) FY 14 $505,493; FY 15 est $791,876; and FY 16 est $791,876 - HPSL Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds). (Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds)) FY 14 $1,125,063; FY 15 est $3,461,345; and FY 16 est $3,461,345 - PCL Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds). (Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds)) FY 14 $17,192,506; FY 15 est $7,522,358; and FY 16 est $7,522,358 - LDS Project Grants (to capitalize loan funds).
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
$1,000 to $4,715,970 for FY 14: Average: $308,575 per institution for FY 14.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
All administrative and audit requirements and the cost principles that govern Federal monies associated with this activity will be subject to the Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200 as codified by HHS at 45 CFR 75.

HRSA awards are also subject to the requirements of the HHS Grants Policy Statement (HHS GPS) that are applicable based on recipient type and purpose of award. The HHS GPS is available at
Examples of Funded Projects
Not Applicable.


Federal Grants Resources