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J1 Visa Program

J-1 Physician Visa Program Information

Background: J-1 Physicians, also known as Foreign Medical Graduates (FMGs) or International Medical Graduates (IMGs) are physicians from other countries who have sought and received a J-1 exchange visitor visa. The visa allows holders to remain in the U.S. until their studies are completed. At the completion of their studies they may 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 sponsor J-1 physician waiver requests. Montana participates in the Conrad 30 J-1 Visa Waiver program; waiver approval is dependent on an identified job offer, for a minimum of 40 hours per week for 3 years. J-1 Provider Waiver requests: Copies of Montana's J-1 Visa Waiver Policy can be obtained by contacting Brandy Kincheloe at 406-444-3934 or bkincheloe@mt.gov.

Shortage designated areas in Montana: Much of Montana is designated as a HPSA or a MUA. The list of HPSAs is included in the Federal Register. A list of federally designated shortage areas in Montana is available from the Bureau of Primary Health Care (301) 594-0816 or the Montana Primary Care website Shortage Designation link or by calling the Montana Primary Care office (406)444-3934.

Practice Opportunities in Montana: Most sites are private practice, owned by the provider or a local facility. Practices in Montana tend to be very small, with only a few practices of 10 or more providers. Many have only one or two providers. The larger practices are located in non-shortage designated areas. A list of current physician vacancies in Montana, can be obtained on the web at www.3rnet.org.