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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

NURSE BILL INTRODUCED IN HOUSE

Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.

H.R. 2536 has been introduced in the House by Congressman Robert Wexler. This is the first step in what will be a very tough process. The bill's text has not yet been released, but it is going to be highly similar to H.R. 5924, introduced last year. The bill would allocate 20,000 additional green cards per year for three years for nurses and physical therapists. Spouses and children will get green cards and will not be included in the 20,000 figure. Employer petitioners will pay a $1500 fee in addition to regular green card fees. The fee will support nurse training programs around the US.

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  1. Kavitha's Avatar
    Hello Greg,

    Any idea whether this is a bipartism bill? Who are the cosponsors?
  2. George Chell's Avatar
    Cuts in education spending in the US, particularly in states such as California, will adversely affect training of nurses eventually forcing the hand of congress to bring in foreign nurses. The budget situation in California is so bad that they may not even prosecute shoplifters and other petty thieves such as pickpockets until the budget crisis eases.
  3. Kavitha's Avatar
    Hi George,

    Any idea whether the nurse bill introduced is a bipartism bill?
    Could you please throw some light as to who are the co-sponsors?
  4. Adi's Avatar
    Hi Greg,
    It was introduced last year with not actions. How long does it generally take for a bill become law once introduced (assuming it is backed and has chances)?

    Adi
  5. Openhouse's Avatar
    Yes, it is a bipartism bill.

    WEXLER (D)
    SENSENBRENNER(R)
    LOWEY(D)
    BILBRAY(R)
    COHEN(D)
  6. guest's Avatar
    Finally the long awaited bill was reintroduced! thank you legislators! Hopefully this bill will actually get passed and ease nurse immigration. There was too much talk about last year's bill and unfortunately bil wasnt passed. Lets hope this time around there will not be too much politics around it but action to pass it. Thank you again!
  7. Greg Siskind's Avatar
    The obstacles for the nurse immigration bill are not related to partisan politics per se. There are obstacles due to the general reluctance of Congress to take on employment-based immigration problems and also labor groups that have been causing aggravation. This bill reflects a lot of negotiating between the different interest groups which is very important. I am more optimistic this year because of all of the work that has gone in to the bill plus the persistence of nurse shortage problems even with rising general unemployment. But make no mistake that this is going to require a lot of work.
  8. Dan's Avatar
    California Nurses Association and American Nurses Association oppose bill like this. They are one of the obstacles.
  9. Adi's Avatar
    Is there ever a bill that somebody's not opposing except when it comes to pay increase for senators/congressmen?
  10. none's Avatar
    http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090520/NEWS01/905200318/1119

    http://www.medcitynews.com/index.php/2009/05/boom-market-for-lpns-goes-bust-at-least-for-awhile/

    http://www.kwch.com/Global/story.asp?S=10359275

    Why do we need this bill?
  11. JoeF's Avatar
    You'll find out why we need it when you get admitted to a hospital and get sub-par care due to overworked nurses...
  12. George Chell's Avatar
    "Why do we need this bill?"

    To drive health care costs down. Perhaps with this bills and fewer nursing jobs wages will decline and health care costs would be driven down. Either that, or medicare and social security are going bust sooner than we anticipate!

  13. Jim's Avatar
    "Why do we need this bill?"

    You should at least read the articles you are posting before making comments here.

    First of all LPNS is not part of the bill, only RNs.

    Second of all, these kind of articles saying there is no shortage and new grads having a hard time getting a job only re-surfaced lately when some hospitals are temporarily withholding hiring during the recession. If you read more reliable and more comprehensive articles that says why, then you you will know that that situation is only temporary and that the shortage will ensue again and more severe than ever once the hospitals start hiring again.

    And for every article such as the ones you mentioned that are one-sided there are more articles that keeps saying there is a shortage. Just look at the LPN article and read it until the end. Guess you did not even bother reading the whole article. That's a perfect example right there. Thanks for posting it.


  14. Jim's Avatar
    @none

    Here, this is a more unbias and comprehensive article:

    http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2009/may/08/1n8nursing011932-recession-temporarily-eases-nursi/?uniontrib

    Please read the whole thing.

    Once, the economy stabilizes (and it is showing some signs already per the consensus I keep reading/watching)and once the ones that are supposed to retire finally retires and the ones that ONLY went back because their husbands got laid off start leaving again (and they will for sure) the shortage will go back and more severe than ever. We may not even wait that long. The ERs lately are getting swamped in places like NY because of the Swine flu scare. Not to mention, that in case a full pandemic ensues, a significant number of domestic nurses will not even report for work - this is well documented already by many studies, surveys, polls and as well as actual discussion coming from both nurses and some physicians. You can even ask AFL-CIO, they know this as well.

    Regarding LPNS (different from RNs in role and education), it's been vanishing in places like California because of the mandatory nurse-to-patient ratio because hospitals are forced to concentrate their resources on RNs only.

    And if you read the whole article, the nurse-to-patent ratio in CA actually made their nursing shortage worse.

    So, if a national mandatory nurse-to-patient ratio is enforced like Sen. Boxer's proposal (and a House version introduced early in May) is passed it will further make the national shortage worse and at a time that the US economy is starting to recover and hospitals start hiring again. Double whammy.

    Triple whammy if there would be a full pandemic by fall or winter.

  15. gg's Avatar
    The fact that a bill is introduced does not mean its law. We have seen this so many times and therefore its best to keep expectations low and fingers crossed.

    However from a H1B standpoint; there are many people who have been waiting for their Green Card for up to 10yrs; they are feeling short changed by this bill. I spoke to a few H1B folks this morning who are now thinking about getting into a crash course nurse program
  16. George's Avatar
    "And if you read the whole article, the nurse-to-patent ratio in CA actually made their nursing shortage worse."

    From what I see even nursing schools are seeing budget cuts in CA which will aggravate the shortage in the future.

  17. George's Avatar
    "However from a H1B standpoint; there are many people who have been waiting for their Green Card for up to 10yrs; they are feeling short changed by this bill. I spoke to a few H1B folks this morning who are now thinking about getting into a crash course nurse program."

    They will be better off going to Canada taking their jobs with them causing severe loss of tax money to the US government, more borrowing and downgrading of the AAA rating. Perhaps that is what Grassley, Durbin and the racist Sessions want! This is the advise I generally give H1Bs if they cannot secure a visa. I gave this advise to two people in Seattle and they negotiated a deal with their corporation to take their jobs with them to Alberta....

    http://www.albertah1b.com/
  18. Kavitha's Avatar
    Hi George

    Let us hope the bill for recapture of unused visa will also be reintroduced soon. This is the only option for those H1B holders waiting for Green Card. However, I believe the Nurses on H1B visa will be eligible for green card if the proposed nurse bill is approved.

    Hope the Americans, Nurse Unions and congress recongnizes that they must pass the Nurse Bill to meet the immediate shortage considering it will take anything between 5 to 10 years for America to produce their own nurses.
  19. Kavitha's Avatar
    Hi Greg

    Cant the congress categorize the Nurses/PTs in a separate category instead of EB 3. While filing I 140 petitions they are eligible for Schedule A preference. To avoid the reluctance of congress to touch the EB3 subject it would be ideal to separate and identify this as Visas for Schedule A category. I agree technically it makes no difference.
  20. George Chell's Avatar
    "Hope the Americans, Nurse Unions and congress recongnizes that they must pass the Nurse Bill to meet the immediate shortage considering it will take anything between 5 to 10 years for America to produce their own nurses."

    It will happen sooner or later, say within the next five years..the worse case scenario the overworked nurses end up killing a few people and malpractice lawsuits by AARP and others will make congress (1) pour tons of money educating Americans and (2) create a specific nursing category. The former will be a roller coaster based on the economy and hence the latter is a more stable source of nurses.

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