Report: Immigration policies need to be altered to fill vital roles

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U.S. immigration policies are restricting the ability of healthcare providers to recruit needed nurses, physicians and other health professionals, according to a report released today by the Immigration Policy Center.

In 2002, the Department of Health and Human Services replaced an Agriculture Department program that brought foreign-trained physicians into the U.S. with a much less effective program. Also, H-1A temporary visas created in 1995 that let hospitals employ foreign-trained nurses have expired.

"The ongoing need for physicians and nurses necessitates the continued and enhanced use of immigration policy to help
fill the gaps," the report says.

The report can be found at www.ailf.org/ipc/ipf0204.pdf.