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Rural Iowa Primary Loan Repayment Program

The Rural Iowa Primary Care Loan Repayment Program was established to address critical doctor shortages in rural Iowa communities. The program provides loan repayment incentives to individuals that practice in specified locations for up to five years. The maximum award for this program is $200,000, which is paid in five increments toward outstanding Federal Subsidized Stafford, Unsubsidized Stafford, Graduate PLUS and Perkins Loan balances at the end of each 12 month employment period.

This program selects 20 students (10 from University of Iowa and 10 from Des Moines University) who choose to go into a selected field, attend an Iowa-based residency program and practice in rural Iowa for at least 5 years. Supported by research, if all of those requirements are met, there is an 88% retention rate of these physicians staying in rural Iowa. The students agree to serve full-time in a community of less than 26,000 and it must be more than 20 miles from a city with a population of 50,000 or more.

Eligibility Criteria Program Agreement Service Commitment Area

A student is eligible to apply to enter into a program agreement if he or she:

  • Attends the Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine or the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine.
  • Is enrolled full-time in a program leading to a doctor of medicine degree or a doctor of osteopathy degree.
  • Receives a recommendation from his or her college contact.
  • A limited number of applicants will be recommended to complete the agreement.

 

A student who meets the above eligibility requirements must sign an agreement in the final year of his or her program of study agreeing to fulfill the following requirements:

  • Matriculate in and graduate from Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine or the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine;
  • Complete an Iowa-based residency program (an accredited medical residency located in Iowa, view list below);
  • Become licensed and employed in the practice of medicine and surgery or osteopathic medicine and surgery, specializing in family medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry, internal medicine or general surgery within nine months of completing residency.
  • Work for a minimum of 5 consecutive years in an eligible service commitment area following completion of residency.

 

Rural Iowa Primary Loan Repayment Program | Iowa College Student Aid Commission

An eligible service commitment area is:

  • An Iowa city with a population less than 26,000 located more than 20 miles from a city with a population of at least 50,000 (see map below).
  • Service commitment areas must provide a $20,000 matching contribution to a trust fund held by the state of Iowa that will fund future recipient awards

Upon receipt of an Iowa license and secured employment, loan repayment awards will be paid directly to the student loan lender. Up to $40,000 can be paid annually to eligible student loan balances for up to five years. Federal loans eligible for repayment include all Subsidized Stafford, Unsubsidized Stafford, Graduate PLUS and Perkins Loans. Priority will be given to eligible students who are residents of Iowa. If an applicant signs an agreement but fails to meet the program criteria prior to receiving a loan repayment award, the applicant has no further employment requirement under the agreement.

 

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