New bill would forgive student debt of healthcare workers fighting coronavirus

U.S. House Democrats have introduced a bill that would forgive student loan debt for healthcare workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Student Loan Forgiveness for Frontline Health Workers Act would establish a federal and private loan forgiveness program for healthcare workers who took out loans for medical training and have made significant contributions to combating the COVID-19 crisis. The contributions can be in the patient care, medical research and testing arenas, as well as in efforts to increase health system capacity.

Physicians, nurses, medical researchers, laboratory workers and other healthcare professionals who are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic would be eligible.

"Front-line health workers are delivering care to the sickest patients and putting their own safety at great risk in order to keep doing their jobs," said Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY). "And in return, I believe that we have an obligation to ensure that they are relieved of the debt they incurred to train for this critical work — in graduate degree programs or other professional certification."

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