J-1 Visa Waiver Information for the State of Minnesota
At the end of the application period, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) received fewer than 30 applications submitted by the deadline. MDH is extending the application period. Applications received during this extension will be reviewed in the order received. There are no waivers currently available.
The Minnesota Department of Health revised the Minnesota J-1 Visa Waiver Program guidelines effective June 12, 2017.
Submissions received by the Minnesota Office of Rural Health and Primary Care will be date-stamp and an email will be sent notifying the applicant’s representative that the application has been received.
Applications received by October 15 will be guaranteed an initial review for minimum legal requirements. If the application is incomplete, the Department will notify the applicant’s representative via email and in writing via paper mail. The applicant will have until the last business day in November to address the issues identified and submit requested information or materials. If the applicant does not respond to the notification within the given deadline or if the supplemental materials or information fails to address the issues identified by the Department, the application will be deemed incomplete and not considered for approval.
Applications received after October 15 will not be guaranteed an initial review for minimum legal requirements.
MDH will announce soon after the last day in November whether or not 30 complete applications have been received. If 30 complete applications have not been received by the deadline, MDH will post an announcement on this website, and applications will be received on a first-come, first-served basis, until 30 complete applications have been received. Previously submitted, but incomplete applications may be resubmitted once complete.
The J-1 Visa Program, sometimes referred to as the Conrad 30 program, is for international medical graduates who wish to pursue graduate medical training in the United States. J-1 Physicians, also known as Foreign Medical Graduates or International Medical Graduates, are physicians from other countries who have sought and received a J-1 exchange visitor visa. The visa allows holders to remain in the United States until their studies are completed. At the completion of their studies they are expected to return to their home countries for two years before applying for employment authorization in the United States.
A J-1 Visa Waiver waives the two-year home residency requirement and allows a physician to stay in the country to practice in a federally designated Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or Medically Underserved Area (MUA) if sponsored by an interested U.S. government agency. State government agencies may also recommend J-1 physician waiver requests, which are called Conrad State 30 programs.
Minnesota is committed to helping all Minnesotans obtain access to quality, affordable health care. Due to the difficulties some areas experience recruiting and retaining physicians, many communities turn to international medical graduates and J-1 Visa Waivers to fill their physician vacancies. The Minnesota Department of Health's Office of Rural Health and Primary Care developed this guide to the J-1Visa Waiver Review and Recommendation Process.