H-1C Nursing Relief Program Reauthorized
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently released guidance to the field on the reauthorization for an additional three years of the Nursing Relief for Disadvantaged Areas Act of 1999 (NRDAA). Specifically, USCIS noted that all I-129 petitions for H-1C classification will be adjudicated exclusively at the Vermont Service Center, in accordance with previous practice.
The NRDAA established the H-1C program to reduce the shortage of qualified nurses in health professional shortage areas by allowing qualified hospitals to employ temporary foreign workers as registered nurses for up to three years. NRDAA expired on June 13, 2005; the reauthorization, enacted on December 20, 2006, took effect immediately and expires on December 20, 2009. Regulations will follow, USCIS said.
The notice is posted at http://www.uscis.gov/files/pressrelease/H1CReauth122606.pdf.