High cost of medical training
WASHINGTON -- Nida Degesys is about to become a doctor. Her husband, David, is a lawyer. Between them, they have $400,000 in student loans.
A fourth-year student at Northeast Ohio Medical University near Akron, Degesys says the prospect of paying off that kind of debt is "a little stressful and challenging" as she tries to complete her training over the next few years.
Degesys, a vice president of the American Medical Student Association (AMSA), is hardly alone. Medical students graduating this year face average loan debts in excess of $162,000.
Editorial: Good intentions of HEAL
Like many federal programs, the Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) began with the best of intentions.
HEAL would be a lender of last resort to keep aspiring medical professionals in school who had exhausted private sources of loans. It was not charity. Interest on the loans began accruing immediately and the government expected to be repaid in full.
Deadbeat doctors owe the government millions
WASHINGTON -- Payback can be a bitter pill for the nation's deadbeat doctors.
The government has seized tax refunds and unemployment checks, claimed judgments against them in federal court, banned them from billing Medicare and Medicaid, even posted their names on a public shaming list.
Yet 930 medical professionals nationwide remain in default, owing the government more than $116 million for loans many stopped repaying more than 18 years ago.