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US to Fast-Track Visa Approval Process for Indian Doctors

November 2014, 21
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US Expands Visas for Indian Doctors
In a major decision taken to address the shortfall of qualified physicians in the US, a familiar US lawmaker has set up a legislation that would fast-track the visa approval process for doctors heading from India who are set to work in the US.

Sources said that the bill will offset the difficulty that foreign physicians, particularly Indian doctors face to acquire J-1 visas from US embassies in their place of origin. The J-1 is a non-immigrant visa that allows foreign physicians to work in US medical residency programs on temporary basis.

The legislation of Grace Meng, Democratic Congresswoman from New York, anticipate that the accelerated review process of J-1 visas should be taken care by an authorized officer from March to June, as a good number of residency programs will be commenced in July.

Meng noted that prolonged and extreme visa delays that Indian physicians are being faced are undesirable. The problem is mainly faced by doctors who are scheduled to work in the US, which resulted tight spots for the US hospitals and Physicians as well. In most of the cases, the delays in visa grants have made hospitals to remove offers to international physicians, preventing them to enter the country.

The visa delay not only affects the plans and promises of doctors made to the US hospitals but also impacts millions of Americans who rely on these facilities for important medical treatments, stressed Meng.

Further she added that the process needs to be fixed and the bill is the only way to do it at a faster pace.

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