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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote, and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, and community efforts.
National Interest Waiver (NIW) Program
Contact the Florida Department of Health
4052 Bald Cypress Way
Tallahassee, FL 32311
The Physician National Interest Waiver is one step in the process for a foreign physician to obtain permanent resident status (green card) through the US Department of State (DOS) and the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). You must obtain a statement from a federal agency or a state department of health that has knowledge of your qualifications as a physician and that states your work is in the public interest. In Florida, that sponsorship/recommendation is coordinated through the Primary Care Office (PCO).
- The physician must practice clinical medicine.
- The physician must practice medicine full time - no less than 40 hours per week – for at least five (5) years
- You must serve in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA), a Medically Underserved Area (MUA), or a Veterans Affairs facility. A primary care HPSA is required for all physicians except psychiatrists, which must serve in a mental health HPSA.
- Applicants must have a current Florida medical license.
Support letters may be requested year-round.
Process to Apply
Application packets can be emailed to FL.PCO@flhealth.gov or mailed to:
The Florida Department of Health
Division of Public Health Statistics and Performance Management
State Primary Care Office
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin #A05
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-1720.
After reviewing the submitted request, the Letter of Support will be drafted and emailed to the physician and their lawyer to include with their application filing for an NIW.
DOH requests that the employer and physician report on the status of their NIW physician’s placement’s activities every 12 months during the 5-year obligation service period, using the Florida NIW Physician Practice Status Report.
Any changes that result in the necessity of a new letter of support/acknowledgement from the PCO would include a new request form and should be submitted in writing via email or mailed to the above address as soon as the need for the letter is determined.
In the event of a termination of employment, the employer and/or the employee must notify the Department in writing within five business days of the termination.