New Bill Eases Work Visas for Foreign Nurses

  1. 6
    Read this today and my sister and I had a heated dialouge as a result. Now I want to see what my AN peeps think. ( Link posted below)

    The US House has a passed a bill easing Visa restrictions for foreign nurses claiming it will ease the burden of a anticipated nursing shortage. Basically, it allows the foreign nurse to seek work with an unrestricted visa( currently, most visas are sponsored by a hospital and that nurse is attached to the sponsoring facility for a contractual amount of time)

    We all know that the shortage is quite a colorful fallacy so naturally I'm quite confused. Is this the right thing for our legislature to do considering the millions of unemployed Americans we have and the glut of nursing students awaiting good paying jobs at this very moment.

    For the record, My sister is veeeeerrrrryyyy against foreign nurses being brought here to work( she's a nurse as well) I am against politicians being bought by private interests via campaign/ personal bank account contributions.

    What do you guys think?

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  2. 141 Comments...

  3. 4
    i had actually written to the ana to oppose this exact bill, because the ana was a big supporter. this was their response:

    ana recognizes the seriousness of the nursing shortage especially in this economy, and our emphasis is on investment in our domestic nursing workforce. ana is deeply concerned with expansion of visas as a means to address the nursing shortage. however, we do understand the push by some groups for expanded visa programs, including nurse visa programs such as the h1-c and the largest being the h1-b program.

    we do believe that hr 1933, that passed the house on august 1, 2001 and has been sent over to the senate, would responsibly expand visa opportunities, and ana does not oppose it's advancement in congress. the bill would renew the h-1c non-immigrant visa program that expired in 2009. a major reason why we are ok with h1-c this is that it is so small and the eligibility is narrow. the program is extremely limited in scope, and h-1c visas can be used only at specifically designated shortage area hospitals—only around 14 even qualify.

    in past, there was a limit of 500 nurses per year for 3 years, the bill would reduce this to 300 per year for 3 years, but allows for a one-time 3 year extension. as i understand it, the extension is open to any current visa holders still here under the program, but the employer would have to petition.

    here is a link to a fact sheet on ana’s overall immigration position:

    i hope i have addressed your concerns. please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions.

    thank you for your time.

    april canter, mpa
    associate director
    american nurses association
    8515 georgia avenue suite 400
    silver spring md 20910-3492
    Otessa, Mrs. SnowStormRN, netglow, and 1 other like this.
  4. 47
    I've been screaming about this for months now....I am not against foreign nurse. I am against the importation of foreign nurses to take jobs from US citizens that can't find jobs all with the intent of causing a surplus of nurses for jobs available and the decreasing of nursing salaries.
  5. 22
    Seriously? This is even a question in some people's minds?

    Put our new grads to work first.

    There may be a massive nursing shortage in the future but why look to other countries' nurses when there is a glut of competent and often highly educated nurses in the US who cannot find work right now?

    I gotta wonder who is profiting from bringing foreign nurses in because the legislators can't be THAT willfully ignorant of the reality of the job markets across the US.
  6. 28
    There are literally 1,000s of unemployed Americans. Many of them nurses. I cannot support a bill that could take jobs away from them and food off of a table.

    Think its time America started taking care of ourselves and stop managing the rest of the world including giving them all of our jobs.
  7. 1
    I'm not against it for the long-term. Look, in 10-20 years, we will have a major nursing crisis. The numbers just do not add up. You can't work forever as cancer, dementia, physical limitations, etc etc will force you to stop working when you hit your 60s, 70s, 80s. The greatest generation is dying off and the baby boomers are coming...

    In the short-term, yeah, it's not that appropriate for right now.
    Ginger's Mom likes this.
  8. 10
    Once upon a time, long ago, someone posted here the position paper that listed the areas in which nursing would be short of nurses. It included areas like doctor's offices which I can't see nurses (outside of NY) working at in the future. It also included a number of advanced practice nurse positions and projected retirements.

    The nursing shortage in the position paper was expected to peak in 2010. This is a big issue for me because its the year I graduated in. In short, there was no shortage when I came out of nursing school.

    ANA is running a huge risk by continuing to support an untenable position in this economy. They certainly won't be getting any of my money.
    gummi bear, montecarlo64, RNfaster, and 7 others like this.
  9. 5
    Totally against it.
    montecarlo64, Skeletor, Otessa, and 2 others like this.
  10. 6
    Introducing HR 1929, currently sitting in the Subcommittee on Immigration Policy and Enforcement. This bill caps visas at 20,000 annually and allows the spouse/children of determined healthcare workers to travel to the US. It imposes fees of $1500 to be paid by sponsoring facility those fees which go to a federal grant issued to applicable nursing schools to support nursing education. Link below.

    HR 1933, currently in the Senate to be voted upon, lowers the annual cap for H1C visas from 500 to 300 and permits a 3 year extension so the nurse can stay here and continue to work.

    It seems that the number of foreign nurses granted entry is capped at 500 per year as of today. However, Congress has ended the entry of foreign physical therapists under the H1B visa because they have determined that we don't need anymore PT's in this country.

    Sooo, do the numbers of student nurses who have failed to find jobs count for anything?

    I smell more cronyism. It seems that the biggest benefactors are immigration law firms and sponsoring agencies that want toincrease their profits.
  11. 0
    Quote from Esme12
    I've been screaming about this for months now....I am not against foreign nurse. I am against the importation of foreign nurses to take jobs from US citizens that can't find jobs all with the intent of causing a surplus of nurses for jobs available and the decreasing of nursing salaries.
    Then you should support the bill. It reduces the number of nurses who can get visas to 300 per year (from 500) per year for three years. The hysteria over this bill might be the biggest tempest in a teapot ever on allnurses.

    Further, let's be honest folks, the vast majority of that 300 are going to be employed by LTC and assisted living facilities.

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