Policy Playbook: Student Loans

Author: Summer Chavez, DO, MPH, MPM (University of Houston) // Reviewed by: Alex Koyfman, MD (@EMHighAK), Brit Long, MD (@long_brit)

In today’s post, we will go over the latest changes to student loans.

Late August 2022, the current administration in partnership with the Department of Education, announced a multi-part plan to address student loans.

1. Federal student loan repayments will restart in January 2023. Until then, payments are paused until December 2022.

2. Borrowers who received Pell Grants can receive up to $20,000 for one-time loan forgiveness. Non-Pell Grant recipients are eligible for $10,000 in one-time loan forgiveness. However, their individual income must be less than $125,00 or for households, less than $250,000.

3. There are also new temporary changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF). Now borrowers with eligible federal loans (Direct, FFEL or Perkins) may be able to get credit for past payments that didn’t count (i.e. late or partial payment, incorrect payment plan). Borrowers need to apply by October 31.

4. They also propose a new rule for changing repayment plans. These stipulations are not in effect yet, but would decrease payments on undergraduate loans from 10% to 5% and borrowers earning less than 225% of the federal poverty level would not make loan payments. Original loan balances of less than $12,000 would be forgiven after 10 years instead of 20. Finally, monthly unpaid interest would be paid. For instance, this would be seen in the scenario where the monthly payment is $0.


Some of these changes will affect physicians at different points in their medical careers. It’s important to check if you’re eligible for these benefits.

Until next month, this has been Policy Playbook!


For more information, check out these resources:

The Biden-Harris Administration’s Student Debt Relief Plan Explained (studentaid.gov)

One-Time Student Loan Debt Relief (studentaid.gov)

PSLF (whitehouse.gov)

PSLF Waiver Offers Way to Get Closer to Loan Forgiveness | Federal Student Aid

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *