Foreign national physicians who seek entry into U.S. programs of graduate medical education or training must obtain an appropriate visa that permits clinical training activities. One visa commonly used by foreign national physicians is the J-1, a temporary nonimmigrant visa offered through BridgeUSA, a critical program within the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) of the U.S. Department of State. BridgeUSA creates a modern-day network of global leaders equipped with the knowledge, tools, and networks needed to thrive professionally and economically. They return home ready to create lasting impact in their communities and our world.
ECFMG is designated by the U.S. Department of State as a BridgeUSA sponsor for J-1 exchange visitor physicians enrolled in accredited programs of graduate medical education or training, or advanced research programs (involving primarily observation, consultation, teaching, or research). Although many universities and research institutions in the United States are authorized to sponsor exchange visitors as research scholars, ECFMG is the sole sponsor of J-1 physicians in clinical training programs.
[Last update: March 17, 2021]