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Student loan reimbursements available for nurses at state veterans homes
Get hired by March 30 and qualify in one year
FRANKFORT, Ky (Feb. 26, 2021) — Nurses at Kentucky’s state veterans homes can now receive up to $40,000 over four years to pay off their student loans.
“This program showcases our values of education, good jobs and taking care of our veterans,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “We also benefit from grants from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, which cover half the reimbursements.”
“We appreciate that nurses have made a substantial investment in their education,” said Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs (KDVA) Commissioner Keith Jackson, “and we want to make sure they can work at our skilled nursing homes – the highest-quality facilities in Kentucky – without worrying about hefty student loan debt.”
The new program was designed to both retain nurses on staff and recruit more nurses. It is open to both Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses.
Nurses on staff who have completed at least a year working full time at one of KDVA’s veterans nursing homes (in Wilmore, Radcliff, Hazard and Hanson) may apply for a first-year reimbursement of one-quarter of their student loan debt, up to a maximum of $10,000 per year.
A recipient may apply the second, third and fourth years, if they have maintained continuous employment in good standing.
• A nurse who has $8,000 in student loan debt may receive a maximum of $2,000 per year for up to four years, for a total of $8,000.
• A nurse who has $40,000 in student loan debt may receive a maximum of $10,000 per year for up to four years, for a total of $40,000.
• A nurse who has $60,000 in student loan debt may receive a maximum of $10,000 per year for up to four years, for a total of $40,000.
The program is now accepting applications from KDVA staff nurses through the end of March. A committee will review and make awards.
Nurses who want to be considered for next year’s awards must be hired for one of KDVA’s four nursing homes no later than March 31, 2021.
“This is a wise investment in our workforce,” said Mark Bowman, Executive Director of the Office of Kentucky Veterans Centers. “Every year we retain a nurse it enhances the continuity of care and saves money by reducing turnover costs. Enhancing our ability to recruit nurses and fill open positions will also improve veterans’ access to care. We want every nurse who is interested in student loan reimbursement to be eligible as soon as possible, which means being hired by the end of March.”
To apply for nursing positions open at Kentucky State Veterans Homes, go to https://careers.ky.gov.
KDVA Restricts Visitors to Veterans Centers Under New COVID-19 Guidance
FRANKFORT, Ky (March 10, 2020) In order to protect Kentucky’s at-risk veteran population, the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs is currently restricting all visitors to the Commonwealth’s four state veterans centers except for families dealing with end-of-life situations.
These centers include: Thomson-Hood Veterans Center in Wilmore, Joseph “Eddie” Ballard Western Kentucky Veterans Center in Hanson, Carl M. Brashear Radcliff Veterans Center in Radcliff, and Paul E. Patton Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center in Hazard.
“As difficult and painful as this is for the family members of our veterans, it is a critical part of our efforts to protect the lives and health of our veterans,” Gov. Beshear said. “We must and will do everything we can to provide the highest level of care for those who served the nation and this commonwealth at risk of their lives. They came home to serve again in their communities because service is their watchword. And now it is our turn to protect them.”
This measure is intended to protect the lives and well-being of our most vulnerable population. As more information becomes available, the Department will reassess its visitor policy. Families of veteran residents should directly contact the appropriate veterans center. Staff will continue conducting Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recommended screening processes to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
For the latest information and prevention updates about COVID-19, visit www.kycovid19.ky.gov or contact the COVID-19 Hotline at 1-800-722-5725.
THVC Staff Save Veteran's Life
It was a usual lunchtime in the dining room at Thomson-Hood Veterans Center when Vietnam Veteran David Baker, an Army Veteran and resident of THVC, had a seizure. He stopped breathing and his heart stopped. Nurse Lindsey Lay and Nurse Aides Anna Teater, Ben Ratliff, Luz Montero and Brenda Kersey recognized the emergency immediately and all five took turns giving CPR.
Mr. Baker regained a pulse and started breathing again. He was sent to the hospital where he was diagnosed with a Pulmonary Embolism as the cause of the cardiac arrest. PE is usually fatal. But these employees were able to recognize the situation, initiate a code blue, give adequate chest compressions and breaths, literally saving the veteran’s life. They are true examples of commitment, accountability, responsibility and excellence in the skilled nursing field of work. The teamwork and dedication they showed is exceptional. They are true life savers.
On August 27, KDVA Commissioner Benjamin Adams presented to each of the life savers the Commonwealth Ambassador Award. The Award is presented to any person who demonstrates exceptional character and citizenship through their contributions to the community, Kentucky or nation.
Alvin Perry Receives French Legion of Honor
On June 7, 2019, THVC Resident Alvin Perry received the Legion of Honor from French Consul-General Guillaume LaCroix. The medal is the highest award from the French Government, similar to the U.S. Medal of Honor. Mr. Perry, 95, earned it for his service fighting in France during World War II. More than 200 people filled the main room of Thomson-Hood Veterans Center in Wilmore to help honor Mr. Perry.
Watch the news video here
Resident Veterans Receive Long-Overdue Medals
On June 19, 2019, more than two dozen veterans living at Thomson-Hood Veterans Center received service medals they had not received at the time they earned them. The medals presented included a Distinguished Flying Cross, one of the highest medals of valor awarded.
More than 100 friends and family gathered to honor those veterans.