How much does medical school cost and can I afford it?

Our experts answer reader questions about student loans and write unbiased product reviews (here’s how we rate student loans). In some cases, we receive a commission from our partners; however, our opinions are our own.

  • Going to medical school in the US can be extremely expensive.
  • From scholarships to loans, there are many options for paying for your medical education.
  • In some cases, you can avoid paying tuition entirely.

Medical school in the US is very expensive. You can easily rack up hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt while you earn your degree. However, there are many options to ease the financial pain of pursuing a medical career.

Check out Insider’s picks for the best student loans >>

How Much Does Medical School Cost?

The average total cost of medical school is $218,792 and the average annual cost of medical school is $57,574, according to the Education Data Initiative. Total costs can vary significantly by institution type and location, ranging from $159,620 for in-state public schools to $256,412 for out-of-state private schools.

2023-24 Annual Tuition at Top 10 US Medical Schools

Other medical school expenses

While tuition makes up the largest portion of the cost of a medical student’s education, location also has a very large impact on the final cost of a medical degree.

Your cost of living can vary greatly depending on whether you live in a big city or in a rural area. For example, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in New York City was $4,317 as of October 2023. That’s compared to $895 for a one-bedroom apartment in Iowa City, according to data compiled by Zumper, a website that connects renters and landlords.

Of course, you may not need a car in New York. In Iowa City, that could be a real expense that comes with fluctuating gas prices, auto insurance and maintenance costs. You also have to eat. Grocery prices are nearly 20% higher in New York than in Iowa City, according to Numbeo, a platform that aggregates cost-of-living data.

The price of textbooks and supplies varies depending on your school and the year you are in. At UCLA, the cost for the first year is estimated at $3,510. That compares to the third year with an estimated cost of $1,629. At Harvard, the estimate is $2,607 for the first year and $1,282 for the third.

And then there are the exams and licensing fees.

United States Medical Licensing (USMLE) Parts 1 and 2 cost about $660 each in 2023, rising to $670 in 2024. Step 3 costs $915 in 2023 and $925 in 2024. License fees vary by state. In New York, they cost $735 for the initial application fee. In Iowa, it will cost you $450.

There are also indirect costs to consider. Take insurance, for example. Medical schools should require all medical students to have an active health insurance policy. Schools should offer the policy, but medical students should be allowed to choose an individual policy after providing documentation that the policy provides comparable coverage.

How can I pay for medical school?

There are many options when it comes to paying for medical school.

Scholarships and grants they abound and can vary greatly in terms of eligibility and what they can be used for, from tuition fees to travel for activities such as conferences. Scholarships and grants come in all shapes and sizes and can add up over time if you apply and qualify for more than one.

You can start your search using top scholarship websites like FastWeb and the US Department of Education’s Student Aid website. The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) also has a database of opportunities.

Local hospitals, religious institutions, local businesses, nonprofits, and others may also offer scholarships, so it pays to dig around. And don’t forget to check with your medical school. Many of them offer assistance to students who need financial assistance.

Federal student loans are available to medical students. Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to see what programs may be available to you. You could qualify for:

  • Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans: Federal Direct Loans are unsubsidized, which means you are responsible for paying all interest on these loans.
  • Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans: You may be able to get a PLUS loan for funds outside of federal direct loans. PLUS loans are also unsubsidized. They tend to have a higher interest rate than federal direct loans.
  • Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Primary Care Loan: This is a school-based program that offers loans to medical students who demonstrate financial need.

Institutional assistance it comes in the form of support provided directly by your school. Some schools cover all costs regardless of need, including New York University Grossman School of Medicine, Kaiser Permanente, and the University of Central Florida School of Medicine.

“Someone who wants to enroll in medical school and minimize their education costs can access a large health care system like Kaiser Permanente, which has an affiliated medical school,” says Dr. David Lenihan, chief executive officer of Ponce Health Sciences University of Puerto Rico. “In exchange for his/her tuition paid by the health system, the student may offer to work in a medically underserved region within the geographic coverage of the health system for five years after his/her residency is completed.”

Such arrangements are beneficial to all parties involved: students can minimize or possibly eliminate the cost of medical school education, and the health system would be assured that a capable, ambitious and creative new physician will be ready to provide their skills and services in the location where they are needed. talented doctors, Lenihan said.

State programs may also be useful. Apply through the FAFSA to see if you qualify for any government loans or other financial aid. Twenty-eight states and Washington, DC, offer loan repayment programs for medical students.

Military scholarships are another option for medical students. The U.S. military, for example, could offer a scholarship, scholarship program, or educational loan repayment, as well as the opportunity to train alongside dedicated healthcare professionals. Scholarship program for health professions F. Edward Hbert, for example, pays 100% of tuition, plus required books, equipment, most academic fees, and a monthly stipend of $2,000. Qualifying medical and dental students are also eligible to receive a $20,000 sign-on bonus.

You will need to meet the service obligation for funding. The active duty obligation in the US military is one year of service for each year you receive a scholarship.

Residencies or fellowships are part of medical school. Both are a continuation of your medical school training. You may also need financial resources during this period. You can use student loans or a line of credit, but keep in mind that the latter will start accruing interest immediately.

You may want to consider a work-study program. Weill Cornell, for example, has a work-study program with funding dedicated to medical students during the summer months between their first and second academic years.

Loan repayment and forgiveness programs for medical schools

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program offers forgiveness of qualified federal student loans after 120 payments are made while employed full-time by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit or government employer. PSLF can erase much of your initial debt tax-free, and some residency programs are 501(c)(3) organizations, allowing physicians to begin making qualified payments as soon as residency begins.

The Health Resources and Services Administration awards grants to help states operate the State Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) for primary care providers working in Health Care Workforce Shortage Areas (HPSAs). New Hampshire’s state loan repayment program, for example, provides funding to health care workers who work in areas of the state designated as underserved and who are willing to commit to a contract with the state for at least three years (or two if they are part-time ).

Finally, the National Health Service Scholarship (NHSC) is a federal program administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) that provides scholarships and loan repayment to health care professionals working in approved sites located in/or serving health care underserved areas (HPSA ) throughout the United States.

Frequently Asked Questions About Medical School Costs

Maybe nothing depending on the route you take. By the way, the median debt was $200,000 in 2019.

Yes, there are several websites available that have databases that you can search to find medical school scholarships. FastWeb, the US Department of Education, and the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) are three examples.

According to MedScape’s Physician Compensation Report, primary care physicians in the United States earn an average of $265,000, while specialists earn an average of $382,000.

There are several options, including through your state or through the federal government. In some cases, you can trade years of service for loan forgiveness in certain states.

Yes. If you have good credit, you may be able to refinance your student loans. If you can get a lower interest rate on your loan, a medical school loan refinance may be worth it.

#medical #school #cost #afford
Image Source :

Leave a Comment