Visa Waiver Programs
Conrad 30 Program
The Florida Conrad 30 application cycle for 2016-17 will open Monday, 8:00 am EDT on October 3, 2016. The Department has made changes to this year’s application documents and procedures.
The goal of the Conrad 30/J-1 Visa Waiver Program is to improve access to qualified physicians within federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) and Medically Underserved Areas/Populations (MUA/MUP).
Applicants must obtain the sponsorship of a state health department when applying to the U.S. Department of State (DOS) and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). In Florida, that sponsorship is administered through the Department of Health’s Primary Care Office (PCO).
Each state is allowed to sponsor up to 30 physicians each year. It is anticipated that the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) will receive more Conrad 30/J-1 Visa Waiver applications for sponsorship than the maximum allowed by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. Florida will accept application packets beginning at 8:00 am EDT on October 3, 2016. Any applications received prior to October 3, 2016 8 a.m. will be disqualified and not accepted for review and consideration. Only applications received on or after October 3, 2016 8 a.m. will be qualified.
The Florida Department of Health's participation is voluntary. The submission of a complete waiver application package does not ensure that the Florida Department of Health will sponsor that physician for a waiver.
Application Packet Submission Procedure
· The submitted application packet should include all supporting information.
· Every field of the Florida Conrad 30/J-1 Visa Waiver Program Application must be completed.
· It is recommended, but not mandatory, that the applicant’s DOS case number be on the bottom right of each document to assure accurate review and processing at the U.S. Department of State and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.
· It is recommended, but not mandatory, that each application include a table of contents and section dividers to assure accurate review and processing at the U.S. Department of State and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.
· Applications must be submitted to the following address:
State Primary Care Office
Division of Public Health Statistics and Performance Management
Florida Department of Health
2585 Merchants Row, Bin #A05
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Conrad 30 Waiver Program
The Conrad 30 Waiver program allows J-1 medical doctors to apply for a waiver for the 2-year residence requirement upon completion of the J-1 exchange visitor program. See section 214(l) of the Immigration Nationality Act (INA). The program addresses the shortage of qualified doctors in medically underserved areas.
National Interest Waivers (NIW)
National Interest Waivers are available for physicians of exceptional ability that show it is of national interest he or she remain in the United States. Physicians must practice clinical medicine full time in a designated shortage area for a five year period.
HHS Exchange Visitor Program
This program allows physicians to obtain a waiver of the J-1 Visa two-year home residence requirement. Physicians must practice primary care clinical medicine full time in a designated health professional shortage area (HPSA score of 11 or greater) for a three year period.