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    I know similar questions have been asked, but I am looking for further clarification regarding the funding situation for students who want to study Paramedic Science/Practice who have already received a tuition loan for a previous degree.

    I have just received an unconditional offer to study Paramedic Practice at the University of Brighton, this is the result of 18 months of planning and hard work. I quit my job in order to gain relevent experience, spent time volunteering, took out a £3000 pound loan to study an access course which I do alongside working at my local hospital, and have generally sunk considerable time, effort and money into pursuing my dream of becoming a paramedic. I did all this based on the information that was given to me, on several separate occassions, by representatives of Student Finance England, who assured me that Paramedic courses would be included as an exception course alongside every other Allied Health profession. I know that many other people have also been misadvised by SFE staff on this matter, and I think we are owed redress for this.

    Anyway….that aside, can anyone tell me why Paramedic courses are being treated differently? It is an allied health profession and is governed by the HCPC in the same way nursing, midwifery, physioterapy, radiography etc etc is. There is no funding available from the Ambulance Trust, therefore prospective Paramedic students are in exactly the same position as people studying for these other professions. Finally, can anybody tell me the likelihood of the situation being changed for intake this year? I have been told that SFE are yet to publish their guidelines for this year. Any help with this would be gratefully received.

    Gabriel
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    (Original post by GabrielLadd)
    I know similar questions have been asked, but I am looking for further clarification regarding the funding situation for students who want to study Paramedic Science/Practice who have already received a tuition loan for a previous degree.

    I have just received an unconditional offer to study Paramedic Practice at the University of Brighton, this is the result of 18 months of planning and hard work. I quit my job in order to gain relevent experience, spent time volunteering, took out a £3000 pound loan to study an access course which I do alongside working at my local hospital, and have generally sunk considerable time, effort and money into pursuing my dream of becoming a paramedic. I did all this based on the information that was given to me, on several separate occassions, by representatives of Student Finance England, who assured me that Paramedic courses would be included as an exception course alongside every other Allied Health profession. I know that many other people have also been misadvised by SFE staff on this matter, and I think we are owed redress for this.

    Anyway….that aside, can anyone tell me why Paramedic courses are being treated differently? It is an allied health profession and is governed by the HCPC in the same way nursing, midwifery, physioterapy, radiography etc etc is. There is no funding available from the Ambulance Trust, therefore prospective Paramedic students are in exactly the same position as people studying for these other professions. Finally, can anybody tell me the likelihood of the situation being changed for intake this year? I have been told that SFE are yet to publish their guidelines for this year. Any help with this would be gratefully received.

    Gabriel
    Hi Gabriel,

    I appreciate your concern here and I apologise for misinformation you've been given that's led to this.

    In terms of eligibility for Paramedic courses as a second degree, it is dependent on entitlement to Ambulance Trust funding. If you're entitled to funding from the Ambulance Trust funding, the course will be classed as an exception and you will be entitled to funding. The funding will then depend on what type of funding you're entitled to from the Ambulance Trust. If you're course is not entitled to Ambulance Trust funding, it means the previous study and equivalent level qualification rules do apply unfortunately.

    I wouldn't be able to go into why the funding is different for Paramedic courses and other AHP courses. The regulations and policy around the the eligibility is set out by the Department for Education (DfE) and they don't go into why they make certain decisions.

    Kind regards,

    John.
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    Hi John, thankyou for your reply.

    Its a confusing situation. I called SFE again yesterday on the advice of admissions tutors at University of Brighton, and once again I was assured that I would be eligible for a second tuition loan...this seems like a serious problem to me as many people are being misadvised and planning their routes to university based on false information. Could you please advise me on how I can raise this issue with SFE in a meaningful way?

    I have also been told by admissions that the situation regarding paramedic funding may be being reviewed in the near future, and that there is a possibilty of individual funding being considered on a case-by-case basis. It seems obvious that something needs to change. It is an absurd situation that eligibility for a tuition fee loan is based on eligibility for Ambulance Trust funding, when no such Ambulance Trust funding exists anymore at my chosen university. Shouldn't those with no access to Ambulance Trust funding be even more eligible for a loan from the SLC?

    Do you know anything about possible changes to the current situation, and if you don't, do you know who I could speak to about it?

    Finally, can you advise me where in the DfE policy it makes reference to Paramedic course funding? I can't seem to find it.

    Sorry. lots of questions...

    Kind regards,

    Gabriel Ladd
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    I've just been on the phone to SFE and this is the first I've heard of this exemption. It's utterly, utterly crazy. You have to be eligible for funding that no longer exists in order to be eligible for funding that you pay back anyway at a very unattractive rate of interest so you can assist in a national health service which caps wages and is struggling to fill vacancies?YET if I moved to France or Poland I could apply to a Scottish university and get charged zero tuition fees or Northern Ireland and pay half? Basically as long as I'm not English I'll get a discount?Did someone get stoned and come up with this policy? I worked in politics for years, this is not entirely implausible.
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    (Original post by Trixy022)
    I've just been on the phone to SFE and this is the first I've heard of this exemption. It's utterly, utterly crazy. You have to be eligible for funding that no longer exists in order to be eligible for funding that you pay back anyway at a very unattractive rate of interest so you can assist in a national health service which caps wages and is struggling to fill vacancies?YET if I moved to France or Poland I could apply to a Scottish university and get charged zero tuition fees or Northern Ireland and pay half? Basically as long as I'm not English I'll get a discount?Did someone get stoned and come up with this policy? I worked in politics for years, this is not entirely implausible.
    I agree it makes no sense, and if it leads to Paramedic courses being unable to fill their courses its a disaster considering the staffing crisis the NHS is facing.

    I met my MP Caroline Lucas to discuss this, she agreed to raise the issue with an early day motion in parliament. If there's anyone reading this who is in a similar situation, please contact your local MP! The more MPs that know about this the more likely it is to be discussed in parliament.

    Gabriel Ladd
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    (Original post by GabrielLadd)
    Hi John, thankyou for your reply.

    Its a confusing situation. I called SFE again yesterday on the advice of admissions tutors at University of Brighton, and once again I was assured that I would be eligible for a second tuition loan...this seems like a serious problem to me as many people are being misadvised and planning their routes to university based on false information. Could you please advise me on how I can raise this issue with SFE in a meaningful way?

    I have also been told by admissions that the situation regarding paramedic funding may be being reviewed in the near future, and that there is a possibilty of individual funding being considered on a case-by-case basis. It seems obvious that something needs to change. It is an absurd situation that eligibility for a tuition fee loan is based on eligibility for Ambulance Trust funding, when no such Ambulance Trust funding exists anymore at my chosen university. Shouldn't those with no access to Ambulance Trust funding be even more eligible for a loan from the SLC?

    Do you know anything about possible changes to the current situation, and if you don't, do you know who I could speak to about it?

    Finally, can you advise me where in the DfE policy it makes reference to Paramedic course funding? I can't seem to find it.

    Sorry. lots of questions...

    Kind regards,

    Gabriel Ladd
    Hi Gabriel Ladd,

    We are currently unaware of any future plans to change this process. This would be defined by Government if a change was made. I have contacted our Policy Team to enquire. I will add any response I receive to this post.

    I hope this information helps.

    Best wishes,

    John.
 
 
 
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