Med student debt load increases

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 55 , No. 4 , May 2013 , Pages 188 News

As part of the 2012 National Physician Survey, medical students and residents were asked several questions about the education-related debt they have or will acquire by the end of their medical education. For students, the percentage expecting to have no debt at the end of medical school remains constant at about 10% according to 2004, 2007, 2010, and 2012 survey results. However, the proportion of those expecting debt of $100 000 or more has doubled from 15% in 2004 to 30% in 2012, representing a significant portion of the student body. Only 1% of students surveyed in 2004 expected a debt load of $160 000 or more, a number which increased to 13% in 2012. 

Of residents surveyed, 18% expect to have no education-related debt upon completion of their training program. One-third of residents expect debt of over $100 000 and 19% expect debt of more than $160 000, up slightly from 2010. Government or university-based financial assistance through grants or loans were at least partially meeting the needs of 58% of the students, up from 44% in 2004. The figure for residents was lower with 43% reporting in 2012 that their needs were met or partially met, down slightly from 45% in 2010. 

The full results of the 2012 National Physician Survey can be viewed at http://nationalphysiciansurvey.ca/off-to-work-i-owe-education-related-debt/.

. Med student debt load increases. BCMJ, Vol. 55, No. 4, May, 2013, Page(s) 188 - News.



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