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Primary Care Loan

The need-based Primary Care Loan (PCL) program is a low-cost federal loan program for full-time medical students in allopathic and osteopathic medicine (pursuing an M.D. or D.O.) who intend to engage in primary care residency and practice upon graduating from professional school program. Designed to provide long-term financial assistance, PCL provides significant savings compared to other federal student loans and private loans. The 5 percent annual interest is subsidized by the federal government during the time you are in school and the one-year grace period. You begin repayment at the end of the grace period. Your payments are calculated for full repayment within 10 years (120 months). The aggregate maximum you may borrow from the PCL program is limited only by the cost of tuition and fees and by the funds available. The loan also offers deferment of principal and interest not found in other loan programs.

If you accept a PCL loan, you are required to enter a residency training program in one of the primary health care fields listed here:

  • Adolescent medicine
  • Adolescent pediatrics
  • Clinical preventive medicine
  • Faculty administrators/policy makers certified in one of the primary health care disciplines
  • Geriatrics
  • Occupational medicine
  • Public health
  • Public policy fellowship
  • Senior residencies in one of the above
  • Sports medicine

You are also required to complete your residency program within four years of graduation and practice in primary health care until the loan is paid in full. Failure to fulfill these requirements has severe penalities (See "Failure to pay" and "Failure to serve").

For consideration, you must report parental data on the FAFSA, even if you have independent student status. Each and every time you accept a PCL, you will be mailed a paper promissory note and loan disclosure form that you are required to complete and return to Student Account Assistance before loan funds can be disbursed to you. PCL is not eligible for consolidation due to the service obligation. You will be required to attend an exit counseling session if you:

  • are about to graduate.
  • leave the University (even if it is just temporary).
  • drop your registration below half-time enrollment.
  • transfer to another school.
  • leave for a National Student Exchange (NSE) experience.

Visit PCL service examples to learn more about which health care fields meet the PCL service obligation.

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