AUGUSTA — Gov. Janet Mills announced a series of programs including tuition forgiveness to help the state navigate a need for more health care workers.

One of the programs will provide $4 million in tuition support via scholarships and student loan relief to help students pursuing careers in nursing and other health professions, Mills said Monday.

The state will also use $8.5 million for tuition forgiveness to provide money to health care employers and workers to help the workers gain new skills and earn advanced credentials, she said.

Another program will use $1.5 million to create a public service campaign to promote health care professions and try to recruit people into the fields, Mills said.

Mills said the state will implement the moves by the end of the year.

Maine has lost jobs during the pandemic, and more than 10 percent of that loss has come in the health care workforce.

Health care facilities across the state “have had to grapple with a shortage of workers and the pandemic has only made the problem worse,” Mills said.

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