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Parsifal

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Hi I'm an Italian medical student. I'd like to attend a residency program in US and then continuing to practice there. I know I should first obtain ECFMG certification and then look for a residency. But what criteria do hospitals adopt to select examinees? Is it expensive to get a residency or I will be payed (in Italy I would earn about 800 euro per month and I should pay little taxes)? Once I got my residency can I remain in US? I tried to search by google I didn't know where to begin reading... Is there any guide regarding it? Thanks in advance and excuse me for my poor english :)
 

f_w

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But what criteria do hospitals adopt to select examinees?

- Your scores on the USMLE exams
- whether you have any publications
- your command of the english language
- recommendations from italian professors known in the US
- clinical experience in your home country

Is it expensive to get a residency or I will be payed

Getting the residency (taking USMLEs, travelling to the US for interviews, application fees etc.) is not cheap (A-Z probably $5000-$7000). Once you are a resident, you are paid between $40.000 and $50.000 per year. This is very similar to the average american family income and while it is enough to live on if you are single, it is not a lot if you bring family.

Once I got my residency can I remain in US?

Unless you can obtain permanent residency (green-card) through a family member who is a US citizen or the lottery, you will do your residency on one of the temporary visas. Either an 'exchange visitor' visa, or a 'temporary qualified worker' visa. (Both have advantages and draw-backs but that is another whole thread). After you finish your residency you will need to obtain a permanent resident card to remain here. Sometimes this can require you to work in a medically underserved area for 3-5 years, in other cases you can move directly from your temporary visa to permanent resident status. Most physicians who finish their training here and want to stay find ways to do so.

25% of practicing physicians in the US did not attend medical school in the US. A good share of them are US citizens who had to go abroad for medical school because they couldn't get admission to a US school, the rest are people like yourself who come from abroad to train and practice medicine in the US. It is not easy to obtain a residency, but if you work hard for it you have a good chance to succeed.
 
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