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The J-1 visa is designed for foreign medical graduates from medical schools who have aspirations to do their practicum or postgraduate degree in the United States. With the J-1, they may do advanced research in any field of medicine, and acquire both clinical and non-clinical knowledge.

Who Can Sponsor Doctors for the J-1 visa?

The only sponsor that is recognized by the government of the United States is the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG).

Documentation and Requirements

It is extremely important to have a certification of medical studies abroad. Additionally, you have to take the necessary precautions, as the ECFMG must verify that the foreign doctor interested in a J-1 visa is ready to participate in a program of specialization or research in the United States. This process is often complex and takes some time.

It is also very important to prove that you are proficient in English both in writing and oral skills.  Your level is measured by taking an English test called TOEFL.

Apart from the TOEFL, it is necessary to take these other tests:

  • Parts I and II of the National Board of Medical Examiners Examination
  • The Foreign Medical Graduate Examination, Step I and Step II
  • The Visa Qualifying Examination (VQE)

All these tests are administered by ECFMG

Requirements to Apply for the J-1 Visa for Doctors

  • The visa applicant must have a written statement from the government of his or her country of residence that confirms the need for specialized doctors in the field that the applicant specified.
  • You also need a contract or offer from the institution in which you have been admitted to do the specialization.
  • Once you have completed all the previous steps, you may apply for a J-1 visa. The application can be made online by completing the DS-160 form.

The processing time will depend on the consulate or embassy as well as on the personal circumstances of the applicant.

It is very important that the applicant gets prepared, studies, collects all the necessary data, and seeks help from an attorney specialized in migration issues.

Beltran Brito LLP has the necessary tools to support immigrants in their quest for a better future in the United States.

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