Medical students' financial dilemma A study conducted at the University of Cape Town
The financial position of 5th- and 6th-year medical students at the University of Cape Town was analysed. The median annual expenditure for a 6th-year student in private accommodation is R13790. The trend in applicants to medical school has changed, with proportionally more now coming from educationally and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. The accumulated debt of 74 5th-year students and 76 6th-year students, who completed a questionnaire, amounts to R2757415 of which R1596670 must be repaid as cash and the balance as bursary commitments. The burden of meeting these loan commitments is considerable. It is clear that middle-class families can no longer support a student at medical school and that the position for children from poor homes is untenable.
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