Paying Off Those Medical Student Loans

Your medical student loans may feel overwhelming.

Medical professionals tend to carry a heavier debt load due to the cost of their specialized education.

As a new doctor leaving residency, you might find yourself hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. You are already carrying a debt load from your college education and the temptation might be there to spend your salary once you enter into practice. In order for your pratice to thrive long term, you should seek advice on how to manage your debt and to protect your income.

Your financial strategy should include detailed cash-flow planning and should also include disability income insurance and life insurance. Your financial plan should not only grow your pratice, it should also protect your ability to earn an income. Ignoring or putting off such a financial reality in favor of short-term rewards can interrupt patient care and adversely impact professional security.

The Run Down

  • Financial planning can help to ensure that you both pay off your medical student loans and grow your practice.
  • The Federal Student Loan Repayment Program is one option available from the U.S. government.
  • There are also certain professions, such as those in the medical field, that may qualify you for loan forgiveness program.

Additional elements to your financial planning may include a strategy for paying off your student loans. There are work‑related programs like the Federal Student Loan Repayment Program, administered through the Office of Personnel Management.

The Federal Student Loan Repayment Program is, in short, a program where if you work for any federal agency in the government, you may be eligible for your student loans to be paid off by the federal government up to $60,000. This program will pay off, specifically, $10,000 per year of your federal student loans, up to $60,000.

The stipulation to the Federal Student Loan Repayment Program is that you work for some agency within the federal government. Under the terms of the program, any employee (as defined in 5 U.S.C. § 2105) is eligible, except those occupying a position excepted from the competitive civil service because of their confidential, policy-determining, policy-making, or policy-advocating nature (e.g., Schedule C appointees).

Another option may be accepting a position that qualifies for loan forgiveness. There are certain service‑based careers that could help you qualify for loan forgiveness. Generally speaking, those are available to professionals who work in the nursing profession, the medical field, and doctors.

Such loan‑forgiveness programs are typically offered to those people with student loans who are serving under‑served communities. So, for example, if you are a doctor who has a practice in an area where there is a critical shortage of medical professionals, this may qualify you for some student‑loan relief programs.

Another option is looking into either debt consolidation or taking out an unsecured personal loan to pay off your student loans, or even a small business loan to help keep your small medical practice funded. All of these considerations, whether they be a federally funded program or a personal loan, should be a part of your financial plan.

The Takeaway

The costs of your undergraduate and post-graduate degrees may be affecting your medical practice. The interest alone on your student loan debt load may seem almost too much to bear financially. These costs can also compound the expenses your small business generates, such as payroll, equipment, insurance, and more. If your small medical practice is in need of funds to sustain itself or to even grow, AmOne can help. Our knowledgeable associates are ready to guide you through the process finding the right financial solution for your private practice. AmOne offers solutions; your call to us is free and we won’t try to sell you anything. Find out how to reach us and learn more about how AmOne can help you today.