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Review: How To Recruit Foreign Nurses

Roy Vera, R.T., MBA  VIS Medical
July 2007
How To Recruit Foreign Nurses
by Roy Vera, R.T.,  MBA

Starting or expanding your temporary medical staffing agency to recruit foreign nurses
remains one of the most lucrative and highly sought after endeavors.  Recruiting foreign
nurses can be profitable, yet the barrier to entry remains high.  The barriers remain high
partly because the costs and time are your biggest hurdles.  Overcoming these barriers
results in a
profitable and sought after service.  

Let’s examine some of the key processes a medical staffing agency needs to obtain to
recruit foreign nurses.


The H-1B visa allows foreign nurses to be employed by a U.S. employer.

basic requirement to obtain a qualified position in the U.S by an employer are that the
candidate must posses the equivalent of at least a
U.S. Bachelors Degree, as well as
experience in the field for which approval is sought.

The time allowed to remain in the 6 years.  However, the “H” visa is specifically
exempt from the presumption of immigrant intent.  

  • A job offer must be in place.

  • Make sure you file a Labor Condition Attestation with the U.S. Department of Labor

  • Wage survey conducted by the local state employment agency.

  • I-129H petition by INS

If a nurse comes to the U.S.A on a
green card rather than an H-1B Visa, they may be able
to stay permanently.


The EB-3 is what allows a medical staffing agency to recruit foreign nurses to the USA on
permanent resident status.  The process currently takes approximately 8 to 12 months.

TN Status

Allows Canadian and Mexican nurses to work in the U.S... under NAFTA.

To qualify for TN Status
  •        Be a nurse
  •        Be licensed in the state you will work in the U.S
  •        Proof of original country citizenship
  •        Pay small fee.

Make sure the following are completed before your begin to recruit foreign

1.        Make sure that the nurse has proof of diploma from originating country.

2.        Make sure Nurse has a license from originating country

3.        The nurse must pass the examination given by the Commission on Graduates of   
Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS).  

4.        Nurse must posses a license to practice in the state of intended employment.

5.        If a hospital requests to immigrate an RN is exempt from having to submit an
application for alien labor certification to the DOL or to a State Employment Security

How does the process work?

The employer must submit an immigrant visa petition (Form I0140) to the office of the
immigration and Naturalization Service (INS).  The petition must be submitted specific to the
state on intended employment.

Make sure to also include forms ETA-750A and B from the  Labor Department.  The petition
must also include a fee.  The process takes between 6 to 8 months.

The entire process can be complicated and may seem daunting and overwhelming for
many new
medical staffing agencies.  The above information is not meant to be legal advice
to the process of recruiting foreign nurses.  The information allows for a broader overview
of the process of
recruiting foreign nurses.

Contact an immigration attorney that can provide legal assistance and help.

The Law Offices Of Carl Shusterman
624 South Grand Avenue
Suite 1608
Los Angeles, Ca 90017
Phone: 213-623-4592
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