H1B visa is for specialty occupations like doctors, physicians and surgeons. Before the Immigration Act of 1990 for doctors or physicians there was only to come to the US was to engage in graduate medical training for having J-1 status. But according to 1990 Act this requirement is no more needed and now physicians can now get the H1B visa to join residency and fellowship programs.
The doctors who want to live and work in America should keep in mind that there are special licensing requirements, so they must plan before the completion of medical school. One thing more it’s not easy to get H1B visa and also H1B status is not free from problems. But you can get H1B visa if you are prepared properly.
H1B Visas and Research
If you want to teach or perform research in US, and only a small amount of patient care is involved then it’s necessary that you will be having medical education and also licensed in your home country. You must have to acquire an appropriate license by the state where you will be working if the patient care will be performed.
Clinical Practice and H1B Visas
H1B visa can also be used for clinical practice or graduate medical training. For that you will have to meet the following requirements:
A license or authorization from a particular state where you will practice.
You must be having unrestricted license to practice medicine in your country or having graduation degree from foreign or US medical school.
You have passed the appropriate examination.
License to practice medicine, is must requirement in all states for physicians.
Main requirements for H1B visa according to 1990 Act are that a physician must me having a state license or other authorization in order to perform patient care and also a full and unrestricted license to practice in a foreign country or proof of graduation from a medical school.
Remember that some states don’t issue a license without proof of issuance of a visa. So getting license can be a problem because of visa itself. To avoid that you must get a letter from the state licensing board documenting. Usually this letter will satisfy USCIS.
As it’s mentioned earlier that a physician has to pass one of the required medical examinations:
Federation Licensing Examination (FLEX) Parts I and II, or an equivalent examination as determined by the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME), Parts I, II, and III.
The United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE), Steps 1, 2 and 3.
There is also test to document competency in English and passage of the Test of English as a Foreign Language.
Most of above mentioned requirements for doctors are waived for internationally or nationally renowned doctors in their area of specialization and who have graduated from a foreign medical school. And the doctors who obtained the medical degree from US medical schools only have to show that they graduated from a US medical school and that they have also appropriate state license.