J-1 Visa

Medical graduates wishing to pursue postgraduate medical training in the United States must obtain an appropriate visa that permits entry to the US to undertake clinical training activities.


The designated visa for foreign national medical graduates is the J-1 Visa, a temporary non-immigrant visa, which is reserved for participants in the Exchange Visitor Sponsorship Program (EVSP), issued by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG). If you are a physician seeking J-1 sponsorship or currently sponsored by ECFMG, please visit the For J-1 Applicants/Physician” section of the EVSP website, which outlines the requirements and categories of ECFMG sponsorship as well as details on selected federal regulations and application materials.

A Statement of Need is one of a number of requirements of the EVSP that must be met before a J-1 visa can be issued to a medical graduate by the ECFMG. Statements of Need, which are issued by Health Canada, confirm there is a need for the medical skills in Canada and that the medical graduates who are pursuing postgraduate medical education in the US have confirmed they intend to return to Canada and practice medicine in the field of medicine in which they will receive the training.

The latest information on the Statement of Need program is on the Health Canada website. If you have questions about applying for a Statement of Need, please contact the Program Administrator at: hc.j1visa.sc@canada.ca.
As always, we encourage you to register with Health Match BC so that we can assist you in your job search upon your return to Canada.