Mississippi hospital to pay off loans to entice nurses

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A hospital bed (Nexstar, file)

GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi hospital looking to hire more nurses amid a nationwide nursing shortage is now offering to help pay off student loans of new hires.

The Sun-Herald reported that Memorial Hospital in Gulfport is offering to repay loans up to $20,000 for inpatient nurses and registered nurses who work in long-term care facilities and sign a two-year contract. This is on top of incentives the hospital is already offering such as seasonal pay, more money per hour, and tuition reimbursement.

“As the preeminent health-care system for the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Memorial realizes that in order to recruit, retain and develop top talent, our health system must offer a competitive total rewards package in order to maintain our standing as the best in the region,” Memorial Vice President of Human Resources Myron McCoo told the newspaper in a statement.

McCoo said the hospital came up with the idea of the loan repayment after talking with nurses who had worked through the pandemic and were carrying student debt.

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