Are you a nurse in Ghana or any other country looking to migrate to the U.S. to practice your profession? If yes, then this article is for you. In this article, we will highlight the ways in which you can work as a nurse in the U.S. from Ghana.
A nurse is a respectable profession and day in and day out, the U.S. opens its doors to nurses all over the world the opportunity to practice it in their country but it doesn’t come with a set of requirements interested people should follow.
Let’s have a look below:
Step 1. Meet the Basic Requirements
As a foreign nurse wanting to work in the U.S. you have to follow the U.S. federal immigration law and that you meet the basic educational and/or professional requirements:
In order to legally migrate to the United States, you must meet federal requirements listed in full here.
You will need to obtain a Registered Nurse Immigrant Visa (“Green Card”) or H-1B visa.
- Nurses are required to complete a screening program before they can get an occupational visa under U.S. law.
- CGFNS is approved by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to validate the credentials of nine foreign healthcare professionals for occupational visas, including registered nurses.
- Completing CGFNS’ VisaScreen®: Visa Credentials Assessment Service will satisfy the screening program requirement.
- You will need a “U.S.-based employer” that will serve as the petitioner for your visa. Your VisaScreen® certificate must be included on every visa or green card petition filed on your behalf.
- Read more about VisaScreen.
Educational / Professional
In order to seek work as a foreign-educated nurse, you must demonstrate at least some of the following:
- You must be a graduate of an accredited nursing education program in your country of education.
- You are licensed as a Registered Nurse in another country.
- You’ve practiced as a Registered Nurse for at least two years before.
- Some foreign-educated nurses must demonstrate their proficiency with the English language by taking an exam such as the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC), or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic). There are exemptions depending on your country of origin.
Step 2. CGFNS Evaluates your Credentials
State Boards of Nursing require that you first apply to CGFNS International, Inc. to have your academic and professional credentials evaluated to ensure that your documents are authentic and that what you’ve learned is comparable to U.S. nursing standards. You may also be required to take the CGFNS Qualifying Exam® to satisfy State Board requirements, to satisfy immigration requirements for obtaining an occupational visa, and to determine your readiness for a licensure exam.
Find out what CGFNS program you need. Apply to CGFNS.
Step 3. Pass a Licensure Exam
In order to practice nursing in the United States, you will need to have a professional license from the state where you plan to work. Registered Nurse licenses are regulated by State Boards of Nursing with varying requirements.
Step 4. Find a Registered Nursing Position
After you meet all federal immigration requirements, have had your credentials evaluated by CGFNS, meet your State Board of Nursing requirements, and have passed a licensure exam, you are ready to begin working as a registered nurse in the United States!
While it’s not required, you may choose to work with a nursing recruiter to help you find a registered nurse job. These recruiters can also act as your “U.S.-based employer” for your immigrant visa.
Check out our previous post here.