Health Professionals Recruitment and Retention Programs 

Arkansas Health Professionals - Primary Care, Mental Health & Dental

  • The Office of Rural Health & Primary Care (ORHPC) is engaged in placement of healthcare providers in medically underserved areas and health professional shortage areas in rural Arkansas.  Serving as the state liaison for the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), health professionals are matched with clinical sites in Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs). 
     
  • To access Arkansas employment opportunities in Arkansas’ Health Professional Shortage Areas please control/click to follow link: Primary Care Job Vacancies in Arkansas' Underserved Areas
     
  • Find out if your site address is in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) for Primary Care, Mental Health, or Dental; or if it is in a Medically Underserved Area/Population (MUA/P) please use the search option at http://datawarehouse.hrsa.gov/GeoAdvisor/ShortageDesignationAdvisor.aspx

Loan Repayment Programs

National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Loan Repayment Program

Subscribe with HRSA to be notified when the NHSC LRP application opens: https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USHHSHRSA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USHHSHRSA_134

The NHSC Loan Repayment program provides loan repayment assistance to licensed primary care medical, dental, and mental and behavioral health providers who serve in communities with limited access to health care. There are both full-time and half-time options for service commitment. The dollar amount of assistance and length of service depend on participation in either the full- or half-time and on the need on the Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) score of the site.

In order to apply for the loan repayment program, you must:

  • be licensed to practice in an NHSC-eligible discipline, 
  • have a job at an NHSC-approved site, and 
  • have unpaid, qualifying educational loans

Primary care providers working full-time at an NHSC-approved site with a HPSA score of 14 or above can receive up to $50,000 in loan repayment for committing to serve for two years.
Primary care providers working full-time at an NHSC-approved site with a HPSA score of 13 or below can receive up to $30,000 in loan repayment for committing to serve at the site for two years.
At the end of the two year service requirement, Corps members may apply to continue their service and receive additional loan repayment. With continued service, providers may be able to pay off all their student loans!

Students to Service Loan Repayment Program (S2S)

Subscribe with HRSA to be notified when the NHSC Students to Service (S2S) application opens:

https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USHHSHRSA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USHHSHRSA_134

The National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Students to Service Loan Repayment Program (S2S) is a program that provides loan repayment assistance to medical students (MD and DO) in their last year of school, in return for a commitment to provide primary health care services in eligible Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) of greatest need.  The S2S LRP will provide funds to participants to repay their outstanding qualifying student loans while still completing health professions training. 

If selected, you can receive $120,000 in loan repayment for committing to serve at an approved NHSC site full time for at least 3 years (or half time for at least 6 years) following the completion of a primary care residency. If your eligible student loan balance is less than $120,000, you can receive funding to pay off those loans.

Faculty Loan Repayment Program (FLRP)

Subscribe with HRSA to be notified when the Faculty Loan Repayment Program  application opens: https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USHHSHRSA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USHHSHRSA_134

The Faculty Loan Repayment Program (FLRP) is administered by the Bureau of Clinician Recruitment and Service (BCRS) in the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). This program is for Health Professions Faculty from disadvantaged backgrounds who may receive as much as $40,000 towards repayment of their student loans in exchange for educating tomorrow’s clinicians.  Individuals selected to participate in the program agree to serve on the faculty of an accredited health professions college or university for 2 years.  The Government pays up to $40,000 of the participant’s student loans and provides funds to offset the tax burden. Participants should also receive matching funds from their employing educational institution. 

Eligible Disciplines include:  Allopathic Medicine, Osteopathic Medicine, Podiatric Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Optometry, Nursing (RN or Advanced Practice RN), Public Health (graduate level), Physician Assistant, Behavioral and Mental Health graduate level (Clinical Psychology, Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, Professional Counseling), Allied Health Professions-baccalaureate or graduate degree programs (Dental Hygiene, Medical Laboratory Technology, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Radiologic Technology, Speech Pathology, Audiology, Registered Dietitian)

Nurse Corps Loan Repayment Program 

Subscribe with HRSA to be notified when the NURSE Corps LRP application opens: https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USHHSHRSA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USHHSHRSA_134
Loan repayment assistance is available to registered nurses and advanced practice registered nurses, such as nurse practitioners, working in a public or private nonprofit Critical Shortage.  NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program participants receive 60 percent of their total outstanding qualifying educational loan balance incurred while pursuing an education in nursing in exchange for a 2-year service commitment.  Qualifying participants may receive an additional 25 percent of their original loan balance for a third year of service.

To be eligible to apply, you must: 

  • be a US Citizen, US national or lawful permanent resident
  • be a licensed registered nurse (nurse practitioners and other advanced practice nurses are encouraged to apply) or nurse faculty
  • have completed your training (diploma, associate, baccalaureate or graduate)
  • be employed full time (at least 32 hours per week) at an eligible critical shortage facility.

Where Participants Serve: Public or private nonprofit Critical Shortage Facilities: Critical Access Hospital, Disproportionate Share Hospital, Public Hospital, Federally Qualified Health Center, Indian Health Service Health Center, Native Hawaiian Health Center, Rural Health Clinic, Skilled Nursing Facility, State or Local Public Health or Human Services Department, Ambulatory Surgical Center, Home Health Agency, Hospice Program, Non-Disproportionate Share Hospital, Nursing Home
The health care facilities listed above are Critical Shortage Facilities only if they are located in, designated as, or serving a primary medical care or mental health HPSA.

Scholarship Programs

National Health Service Corps (NHSC) Scholarship Program

Subscribe with HRSA to be notified when the NHSC Scholarship  application opens: https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USHHSHRSA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USHHSHRSA_134

The National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program (SP) awards scholarships each year to students pursuing careers in primary care (funding is for a maximum of 4 years including tuition, required fees, reasonable educational costs and monthly support stipend).  In return, students commit to serving for two to four years in an underserved Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) site upon graduation and completion of training. 

The Site types may be a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), FQHC Look-Alike, Rural Health Clinic, Hospital-Affiliated Primary Care Outpatient Clinic, Indian Health Service, Tribal Clinic, Urban Indian Health Clinic, State or Federal Correctional Facility, Private Practice (Solo/Group) or other Health Facilities (Community Mental Health Facility, Community Outpatient Facility, Critical Access Hospital, Free Clinic, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)Health Service Corps, Mobile Unit, School-Based Health Program or State/County Department of Health Clinic).

To apply, you must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. national, be a full-time student at an accredited school and pursuing a degree in an NHSC eligible disciple:  Medicine (MD or DO), Dentistry (DDS or DMD), Nurse Practitioner, Certified Nurse-Midwife or Physician Assistant. 

NURSE Corps Scholarship Program

Subscribe with HRSA to be notified when the NHSC Scholarship  application opens: https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USHHSHRSA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USHHSHRSA_134

The NURSE Corps Scholarship Program (SP) awards scholarships each year to students pursuing careers in primary care (funding is for a maximum of 4 years including tuition, required fees, reasonable educational costs and monthly support stipend).  In return, students commit to serving for two to four years in an underserved Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) site upon graduation and completion of training.

Site types may be Ambulatory Surgical Center, Critical Access Hospital, Disproportionate Share Hospital, Federally Qualified Health Center and FQHC Look-Alike, Home Health Agency, Hospice Program, Indian Health Service Health Center, Native Hawaiian Health Center, Non-Disproportionate Share Hospital, Nursing Home, Public Hospital, Rural Health Clinic, Skilled Nursing Facility, State or Local Public Health or Human Services Department located in a designated Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA).

To apply, you must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. national, be enrolled or accepted for enrollment in a professional nursing degree program (baccalaureate, graduate, associate degree, or diploma) at accredited school of nursing located in the US.  Preference is given to qualified applicants with the greatest financial need who are enrolled or accepted as a full-time student at an accredited school and pursuing a degree in an eligible disciple:  Medicine (MD or DO), Dentistry (DDS or DMD), Nurse Practitioner, Certified Nurse Midwife or Physician Assistant.

Acts

Retired Physician Immunity ACT

Act 844 of 1995 makes it possible for retired physicians to continue service to the community while maintaining immunity from civil suit. Only retired, licensed physicians and surgeons are eligible under this act. Free or low cost medical clinics must assure the clinic's mission is to provide free or low cost services; provide verification that the clinic is not receiving insurance payments for services rendered; submit a list of physicians currently providing services and their medical specialties; make a statement indicating that retired physicians delivering services in the clinic are not receiving any financial or other compensation from the clinic and are acting on a voluntary basis; provide a copy of the retired physician's medical license; and provide a copy of the clinic's policy for notifying patients that the physician rendering voluntary medical services is retired and that he/she is immune from civil suit. Accompanying the application must be a copy of the most recent financial or audit statement or an explanation for its absence. The application is effective for three years.

Downloads
Retired Physician Immunity Act Application Form

Volunteer Licensed Health Care Professional Immunity Act

Act 276 of 1997 makes it possible for other non-retired health care professionals to provide services as volunteers free from civil damages. Any medical doctor, chiropractic physician, dentist, optometric physician, podiatrist, and licensed health care professional who provides voluntary service without financial reimbursement in a clinic, hospital or primary care setting is eligible for registration under this act. Free or low cost medical clinics must provide a statement indicating the mission of the clinic is to provide free or low cost services; verification that the clinic is not receiving insurance payments for services rendered; a list of all physicians and their medical specialties and health care professionals currently providing volunteer services in the clinic; a statement indicating that physicians and health care professionals delivering services in the clinic are not receiving any financial or other compensation from the clinic and are acting on a voluntary basis; a statement on file that all professional health care providers providing services in the clinic have a current professional license; and a copy of the clinic's policy for notifying patients that the physician/health care professional is rendering voluntary medical services and that he/she is immune from civil suit. This policy must be in a language understood by the patient. Accompanying the application must be a copy of the most recent financial or audit statement or an explanation for its absence. The application for registration is effective for three years.

Downloads
Volunteer Licensed Health Care Professional Immunity Act Appication Form

Other Arkansas Rural Practice Programs

For additional opportunities for rural communities, physicians, and students interested in rural health, connect to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine Rural Programs.

Rules and Regulations