A BRADFORD MP has described feeling "disappointed" by the care minister's admission that the Government has no plans to reimburse this academic year's tuition fees for healthcare students on the NHS frontline.

Judith Cummins (Labour, Bradford South) submitted a written question to Helen Whately, the minister for care and Conservative MP for Faversham and Mid Kent constituency, at the end of April.

Mrs Cummins asked if the Government had any plans to lift their tuition fees as a thanks.

It was spurred on by the Telegraph & Argus' campaign urging the Government to waive this year's tuition fees for student nurses, paramedics and midwives who are currently working in the pandemic.

Some are finishing unpaid placements while others are now paid as contracted band 4 level nurses.

Mrs Whately said: "There are currently no plans to reimburse tuition fees and students will continue to be required to pay fees for their final term.

"The Government is extremely grateful to all students who are choosing to opt in to work in the National Health Service during this extremely difficult time and will be ensuring all students who do so are rewarded fairly for their hard work.

"Nursing students who opt in will receive a salary and automatic NHS pension entitlement at the appropriate band. They will also still receive their student maintenance loan and Learning Support Fund payments."

But Mrs Cummins says the fight to scrap fees is not over yet.

She told the Telegraph & Argus: "This is a very disappointing response from the Government. Student nurses are risking their lives on the frontline of the fight against coronavirus.

"The least the Government could do to recognise this bravery and commitment is to scrap this years tuition fees for student nurses.

"I will continue to support the T&A's campaign and call on the Government to do the same."

The campaign has won the support of almost 600 people across the country in just under a week.

Among those signing their name to the call was Lynette Clark from Taunton who is thinking of her young niece currently working in an intensive therapy unit.

Tania Stone, also from Taunton, said: "My daughter is a student nurse. I see how she struggles with managing her finances and worries over the debt. She is currently opting in and working frontline on an intensive care ward whilst studying".

Andrea Cooper of Barnsley said: "I am a student midwife and feel it unjust that we have to pay fees and loans when helping the nation."

Molly Kenyon from Shipley said: "The NHS needs more permanent staff and to reduce the need for agency nurses.

"One important step towards this is to restore bursaries for nurses in training."

While Adama Tarawally from Dartford explained why she signed the petition by saying: "Because nurses have risk(ed) their lives in making the difference in saving lives by being frontline workers and changing lives. Support us as nurses, midwives, and students nurses."

If you would like to back the petition to scrap this academic year's tuition fees for healthcare students who signed up to help in our hospitals during the pandemic, click here (directs to change.org).