What is a VisaScreen Certificate?


Healthcare professionals who are immigrating to the United States must complete a VisaScreen to qualify for certain work visas. VisaScreen helps match credentials earned in other countries to eligibility standards here in the United States.

The program reviews the applicants education, licenses, and English language skills. Nurses must also pass a US-registered nurse licensing exam, or prevent a CGFNS certificate. 

Completing the VisaScreen program ensures you’ll be able to work in your field when you get to the United States, rather than being forced into underemployment. 

When is a VisaScreen required?

You will require a VisaScreen if you are a:

  • Registered nurse
  • Licensed practical nurse
  • Vocational nurse 
  • Physical therapist
  • Occupational therapist
  • Physician assistant
  • Audiologists
  • Medical technician
  • Clinical laboratory scientist
  • Speech language pathologist

Immigrants from some countries are exempt from having to complete the VisaScreen process. The exemption countries include Australia, Barbados, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, South Africa, Trinidad, Tobago, and the United Kingdom. You also will not need one if you are seeking permanent residency status based on your relationship to a United States citizen. 

How long does it take to process VisaScreen?

You can ask for Expedited Review, which means you’ll receive your certificate within 2 to 3 business days, so long as you meet all of the requirements. 

Without expedited service, the amount of time that it takes to complete your report and generate your certificate does vary. 

What happens after VisaScreen?

Once you pass the VisaScreen you’ll be awarded a VisaScreen Certificate. This may be presented as part of a visa application or brought to a consular office. You can also show the certificate to a potential employer to help them understand the extent of your qualifications. 

How long is VisaScreen valid for? 

A VisaScreen certificate is valid for five years. 

You may renew the certificate without retaking certain exams as long as you can show you’ve been employed in the United States in the health care profession designated on your certificate for at least 27 to 36 months, including 9 months of the year before the date that the renewal application is submitted. You must also have your employer complete, sign, and submit an employment summary on corporate letterhead. 

Get Help Today

A VisaScreen is just one of the many requirements a healthcare professional must meet in order to immigrate to the United States. There are many other complex steps that you will have to go through, even if you are only seeking temporary work here.

Smooth the process by reaching out to a qualified immigration law. Hykel Law is here to help and ready to listen. Contact us today.

See also:

Immigration to the US, for Nurses

3 Immigration Mistakes to Avoid

Is it Possible to Get a Work Visa Without a Sponsorship? 


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