Hospitals have a shortage of young doctors due to Trump’s visa ban. On June 22, President Trump issued a proclamation barring the entry of foreign workers on most types of work visas. This includes doctors on H-1B visas, some of which who were supposed to come and assist hospitals with the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the proclamation, doctors “involved with the provision of medical care to individuals who have contracted COVID-19 and are currently hospitalized” are exempt from the ban, but specific guidance on this has been slow and inconsistent. Some consulates began approving H-1B visas, on July 16 after the State Department published guidance affirming that doctor’s treating COVID-19 are exempt from the ban. Other consulates are still not processing doctors’ visas, however. In hospitals, delays of only a few weeks can create a staffing crisis.
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