Hospitals Are Suddenly Short of Young Doctors — Because of Trump’s Visa Ban

July 21, 2020 by Christen Aldrich

Filed under COVID-19 for Employers, COVID-19 for the Workforce, Regulations

Last modified July 22, 2020

According to this recent article by ProPublica, hospitals across the United States brace for a difficult six months — with the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic still raging and concerns about a second wave in the fall. Some hospitals are severely short-staffed because of an ill-timed change to immigration policy and its inconsistent implementation.

proclamation issued by President Donald Trump on June 22, barring the entry of most immigrants on work visas, came right as hospitals were expecting a new class of medical residents. Hundreds of young doctors were unable to start their residencies on time.

ProPublica has heard from 10 would-be medical residents stuck abroad because of H1-B visa issues. Six of them had gotten emergency consulate appointments for visa approval, but when they arrived for meetings they were told their visas could not be approved. Three were still waiting on DHS approval for their visas, a necessary step before a visa gets a consulate stamp. One resident had application approval but was denied an emergency consulate interview appointment because of the ban. All were destined for hospital positions treating COVID-19 patients.

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