2020 California Code
Business and Professions Code - BPC
DIVISION 2 - HEALING ARTS
CHAPTER 1 - General Provisions
ARTICLE 13 - Standards for Licensure or Certification
Section 855.

855.  

(a) Up to 70 international medical graduates who have passed their United States medical license examination on the first attempt and who have been working in the medical field in the capacity of a medical assistant, a nurse practitioner, a nurse-midwife, a physician assistant, a dental hygienist, or a quality assurance and peer review specialist for not less than three years, shall be selected to participate in a pilot program. Preference shall be given to international medical graduates who are residents of California, have experience working in communities whose language is other than English and whose culture is not from the dominant society, and have a proven level of literacy in the foreign language of a medically underserved community.

(b) If there are not 70 international medical graduates who meet the criteria of subdivision (a), the remaining openings may be filled by participants who have passed the United States medical license examination on two or more attempts, have been working in the medical field in the capacity of a medical assistant, a nurse practitioner, a nurse-midwife, a physician assistant, a dental hygienist, or a quality assurance and peer review specialist for not less than three years, and who pass an additional test to be determined by the medical facility and the medical school participating in the pilot program. Preference shall be given to international medical graduates who are residents of California, have experience working in communities whose language is other than English and whose culture is not from the dominant society, and have a proven level of literacy in the foreign language of a medically underserved community.

(c) An international medical graduate shall not be eligible for this program if he or she has not graduated from a school in good standing that is recognized by the Medical Board of California.

(d) Upon selection for the pilot program, participants may submit an application to the International Medical Graduate Liaison of the Medical Board of California’s Division of Licensing, with the appropriate fee, to initiate the medical licensing review process, providing the participant time to remediate any deficiency during the three-year international medical graduates pilot program.

(e) All program participants shall be required to have the foreign language fluency and the cultural knowledge necessary to serve the non-English-speaking community at the nonprofit community health center where they practice.

(f) The Medical Board of California shall issue an applicant status letter to participating and qualifying international medical graduates.

(g) International medical graduates shall be required to participate and satisfactorily complete a six-month orientation program that will address medical protocol, community clinic history and operations, medical administration, hospital operations and protocol, medical ethics, the California medical delivery system, health maintenance organizations and managed care practices, and pharmacology differences. International medical graduates who have passed the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) language exam shall not be required to be enrolled in English language classes. However, if a participating international medical graduate has not passed the ECFMG language exam, he or she shall be enrolled in English language acquisition classes until he or she obtains a level of English language proficiency equivalent to the ECFMG language exam.

(h) (1) Upon satisfactorily completing the orientation program and the one-year residency training program, international medical graduates shall be selected by nonprofit community health centers to work in nonprofit community health centers and disproportionate share hospitals whose service areas include federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas, Dental Professional Shortage Areas, Medically Underserved Areas, and Medically Underserved Populations for a period not to exceed three years.

(2) There shall be two residency programs operated under the auspices of a medical school in good standing, with one in southern California and one in northern California. These residency programs shall be in family practice, internal medicine, or obstetrics and gynecology.

(3) After successfully completing the one-year residency program, the training institution for the one-year residency program for international medical graduates may transfer the program participant into an approved residency program.

(i) (1) All program participants shall be required to satisfy the medical curriculum requirements of Section 2089, the clinical instruction requirements of Section 2089.5, and the examination requirements of Section 2170 prior to being admitted into an approved residency program.

(2) Those international medical graduates who are transferred into an approved residency program shall be required to work in nonprofit community health centers or disproportionate share hospitals whose service areas include federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas, Dental Professional Shortage Areas, Medically Underserved Areas, and Medically Underserved Populations for not less than three years after being fully licensed.

(j) For individuals in this program as specified in this section, the applicant status letter shall be deemed a license in good standing pursuant to the provisions of this article for the purpose of participation and reimbursement in all federal, state, and local health programs, including managed care organizations and health maintenance organizations.

(k) (1) The Director of General Medical Education or an equivalent position in the training institution of the one-year residency program for international medical graduates shall have the authority to make a recommendation to the Medical Board of California for the full medical licensure of an international medical graduate who has successfully completed the one-year residency program if the director believes, based on the performance and competency of the international medical graduate, that the international medical graduate should be fully licensed.

(2) After reviewing the recommendation for full licensure from the director, the Medical Board of California shall have the authority to issue a permanent license to practice medicine in this state to the international medical graduate.

(l) If an international medical graduate desires to secure a permanent license to practice medicine from the board, he or she shall, among other things, be required to be admitted into an approved residency program.

(m) The Medical Board of California, in consultation with medical schools located in California, executive and medical directors of nonprofit community health centers, and with hospital administrators, shall provide oversight review of the implementation of this program. The Medical Board of California shall ensure that funding proposals by appropriate institutions to implement these provisions meet the necessary funding thresholds to fulfill the intent of this program. Implementation of this program may not proceed unless appropriate funding is secured. The Medical Board of California shall report to the Legislature every January the program is operational regarding the status of the program and the ability of the program to secure the funding necessary to carry out its required provisions.

(Amended by Stats. 2003, Ch. 62, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2004.)

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