On June 19, 2018, Congresswoman Yvette Clarke (D-N.Y. 9th), Congressman Mike Simpson (R-Idaho 2nd) and Congressman Paul Gosar (R-Ariz. 4th) introduced H.R. 6149, legislation that would exclude from gross income certain federally subsidized dental faculty loan repayment awards under Title VII of the Public Health Service Act. The dental faculty loan repayment program was created due to the significant difficulties in recruiting qualified individuals to fill faculty positions, especially acute in pediatric dentistry. A critical factor in recruiting and retaining dental school faculty from recent dental school or residency program graduates is the staggering student loan debt and income disparity with private practice. 

Thanks to strong support from Congress, new dental faculty loan repayment grant cycles were initiated by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) in FYs 2016, 2017 and 2018. Programs may support loan repayment contracts over five years to recruit and retain faculty. Full-time faculty members are eligible for repayment of 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 percent of their student loan balance (principal and interest) for each year of service. By alleviating taxation of such payments to the individual, H.R. 6149 will make the program even more effective in recruiting and retaining pediatric dental faculty.

Click here for a copy of H.R. 6149.

The AAPD urges Congress to adopt this bill as part of any future tax legislation under consideration.

Click here for a profile of recent dental faculty loan repayment recipients.

For further information, please contact AAPD Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel C. Scott Litch at slitch@aapd.org.