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Immigration Law

AAO on Physician NIW: Matter of H-V-P-

Matter of H-V-P-,  ID# 16270 (AAO Feb. 9, 2016) - "The Petitioner, a physician, seeks an immigrant visa petition as a member of the professions holding an advanced degree as set forth in section 203(b)(2) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (the Act), 8 U.S.C. § 1153(b)(2). In addition, the Petitioner seeks a "national interest" waiver (NIW) from the requirement of a job offer by a U.S. employer. Section 203(b )(2)(B)(ii) of the Act not only authorizes but requires that such a waiver be afforded to a physician who meets several conditions, most notably for our purposes: (1) that the physician would work in a medically underserved area as designated by the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS); and (2) that a Federal agency or State public health department certifies the physician's work is in the public interest. The Director, Texas Service Center, denied the petition because he found that the Petitioner's past and prospective work as a specialty care physician did not make him eligible for the national interest waiver. The Director then certified the case to us for review. The issue presented is whether eligibility for the physician NIW is available to medical specialists even though the HHS designations ostensibly are limited to only primary care physicians. Upon de novo review, we will withdraw the Director's decision and approve the petition."