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Wisconsin J-1 Visa Waiver Program
Shortage Areas for Waivers

J-1 Visa Waiver: Eligible Shortage Areas for Waivers

The lists of federally designated shortage areas, Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) and Medically Underserved Areas (MUAs) and Medically Underserved Populations (MUPs), are updated on an ongoing basis. The Division of Public Health (DPH) will consider making recommendations in HPSAs of all status.  HPSAs which have been officially withdrawn in a Federal Register Notice are no longer recognized as designated or eligible shortage areas.  The physician’s employment offer must include a practice site that is located in a primary care HPSA or MUA / MUP, or in a mental health HPSA for psychiatrists. A current listing of HPSAs and MUA / MUPs, respectively, are maintained at the following federal web sites:

Checking a street address for location in a HPSA/MUA/MUP:

Check if street address of the practice site is located within a designated shortage area (exit DHS):  Use this link to check if a street address is located within a HPSA or MUA/MUP and get the designation details.

HPSAs are reviewed every 4 years by the federal government to determine if they continue to represent areas that have shortages of primary care or mental health providers. When an employment site is located in an area that loses its federal shortage designation before the J-1 visa waiver is approved, the U.S. Department of State has denied the waiver request in the past. If a HPSA is at risk of losing its federal shortage designation during the waiver application process, this will be discussed with the employer during the application process.

After the J-1 visa waiver and H-1b visa are approved by Immigration and if the foreign physician needs to change employers or practice sites, the foreign physician must locate another practice site that is located in a federally designated shortage area.

How to request a shortage designation

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Last Revised: March 21, 2014