Florida launches FRAME program to provide educational loan debt relief to healthcare providers
The 2023 application cycle for the Florida Reimbursement Assistance for Medical Education (FRAME) program was launched on Feb. 2nd. The program provides medical education loan debt relief to healthcare professionals who are practicing in less populated areas of the state.
The FRAME program was established in 2002. Last July, Gov. Ron DeSantis and the state’s legislature directed about $6.6 million in funding to expand access to primary care health services that utilize the FRAME program.
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“Through the FRAME program, we will increase access to healthcare for families across the state,” Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo said. “By providing this resource, we can recruit and retain healthcare professionals to underserved areas and by increasing capacity, will not only serve families today where they live but will also prepare us for the challenges of the future.”
Under the FRAME program, physicians, physicians assistants, and nursing professionals may be eligible for an annual award of up to $20,000, which would go towards remaining educational loans. Eligible providers must have a primary care specialty, and must currently provide services within a federally designated Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA). Primary specialties include obstetrics, gynecology, general and family practice, internal medicine, pediatrics, and psychiatry.
Applications for FRAME funding will be prioritized based on a combination of factors including direct patient care hours provided in a HPSA, HPSA score, and the length of continued services of the applicant in a HPSA. Funding will be distributed based on a prioritization score.
Reimbursement amounts include up to $20,000 per year for physicians and up to $15,000 for advanced autonomous practice registered nurses. Eligible advanced practice registered nurses and physicians assistants may be awarded up to $10,000 per year, and licensed practical nurses and registered nurses may be awarded up to $4,000 per year.
“We want to ensure we are doing all that we can to recruit and retain great healthcare professionals throughout the state of Florida,” Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nuñez said. “This program will meet a critical need in our state and will prioritize establishing a strong workforce that will help save lives and provide high-quality care every day.”
Applications must be submitted through the portal or by mail. The application cycle runs from Feb. 1st to March 31st, and award determinations will be made by June 1st.