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August 17, 2023

Nursing school scholarship program run by IBX Foundation expands

The Healthcare Scholars program, which began in 2021, aims to diversify Philadelphia's nursing workforce

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IBX Healthcare Scholars Provided Image/IBX Foundation

The Independence Blue Cross Foundation has expanded its Healthcare Scholars program, which aims to increase diversity within Philadelphia's nursing workforce by providing full scholarships, academic support and mentorships to students from underserved communities.

In effort to increase diversity within Philadelphia's nursing workforce, the Independence Blue Cross Foundation has expanded a scholarship program that provides full college scholarships to people from underrepresented communities. 

 The Healthcare Scholars program now provides scholarships, academic support and mentorship to 35 students at 12 nursing schools in the Philadelphia region. It launched as an experimental program in 2021, benefitting five students pursuing nursing degrees at Temple University. 

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 The program was formed in response to a 2021 report by the National Academy of Medicine, which emphasized the importance of addressing the health care needs of a diverse population. 

People of color make up more than 40% of the United States population, but they make up about 20% of the nursing workforce. Plus, research has shown when patients benefit when they share the same race or ethnicity as their providers. 

The scholarships offered by the program remove a financial hurdle faced by many students. The average annual tuition bill for a nursing school in the Philadelphia region is $30,000, according to the IBX Foundation.

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