COVID-19: US Govt offers work visas to medical professionals

THE United State Government is inviting both immigrant and non-immigrant visa holders to its country in order to help in its fight against the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the US government has recorded over 81, 321 cases and more than 1,000 deaths, surpassing China, Spain, and Italy among other nations with previous high reported cases, says the New York Times.

Worldometer, an online platform that records real time COVID-19 cases and casualty figures also put the current cases in the US at 85,762 and more than 1,316 deaths.

According to  the World Health Organsiation (WHO), about 465,915 cases have been confirmed globally, with 21,031 deaths in 200 countries as at Thursday, 26 March.

In the announcement shared via the US Department of States Bureau of Consular Affairs, @TravelGov the request was mainly targeted at medical professionals working to provide a solution to the COVID-19 virus or helps to prevent the virus spread.

“We encourage medical professionals with an approved U.S. non-immigrant or immigrant visa petition (I-129, I-140, or similar) or a certificate of eligibility in an approved exchange visitor program (DS-2019), particularly those working to treat or mitigate the effects of COVID-19, to review the website of their nearest embassy or consulate for procedures to request a visa appointment,” the state department tweeted.

“For those foreign medical professionals already in the United States: J-1 Alien Physicians (medical residents) may consult with their program sponsor, ECFMG, to extend their programs in the United States.  Generally, a J-1 program for a foreign medical resident can be extended one year at a time for up to seven years.”

However, it noted that the visa expiry date does not necessarily determine how long concerned persons can reside in the country.



    Interested persons were urged to confirm required departure date here.

    Moreover, the US Travel Bureau emphasised that those who might be interested in extending their stay or adjust their visa status should apply with the United State Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS).

    This is, however, coming days after medical doctors in Nigeria complained over poor remuneration  and working tools.

    There are reports of several Nigerian medical doctors who had also left the country due to poor welfare package, even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak.

    Olugbenga heads the Investigations Desk at The ICIR. Do you have a scoop? Shoot him an email at [email protected]. Twitter Handle: @OluAdanikin

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