More foreign-born, U.S.-trained doctors would be permitted to remain in the U.S. if they practice in medically underserved areas under a bill unveiled last week in Congress.
Introduced with bipartisan support, the legislation would extend for two years the current “Conrad 30” program that allocates 30 slots to each state so foreign-born doctors can work in medically underserved areas under J-1 visas. The program, which already exists but will soon expire, permits such physicians to remain in the U.S. for three years after their training ends to work in underserved areas. The legislation also would establish criteria under which more than 30 such physicians can be employed in a given state.
Many private safety-net hospitals are located in and around medically underserved areas.