B-2 Visa for U.S. Medical Treatment
Mental health treatment, especially hospitalization programs (sometimes referred to as "Residential" or "Partial Hospitalization Programs") are often lacking in other countries, especially in South America and the Asias. At Crossbridge Clinical Associates, our team of psychologists and network of concierge physicians can assist foreign nationals in locating mental health or substance use treatment for their loved ones or themselves.
If you, or a loved one, want to travel to the U.S. for medical reasons, the appropriate visa to request is the B-2 Visa. Often this process starts with a consultation with a US-based psychologist or physician for mental health. Depending on the recommendations, the individual will then need to apply through their local U.S. embassy or consulate. To be successful in obtaining a B-2 visa, a individual will need to show that this treatment is medically necessary and unavailable in your home country, as well as prove that that they can afford to pay costs of care.
CrossBridge Clinical Associates has partnered with nationwide interventionists, law firms, and concierge psychiatrists, who specialize in providing the medical assessments, needed by the United States Department of State for a B-2 Visa. Moreover, Crossbridge Clinical Associates' network of psychologists and physicians are fluent in Mandarin, Cantonese, Portuguese, Spanish, and Farsi. This can often times be a critical factor and getting the appropriate medical documentation done correctly.
In order to qualify for a B-2 Visa, a client will need to show U.S. immigration authorities that they plan to make a brief and temporary visit to the U.S. for needed medical treatment. As part of the application process, a client will need to provide evidence that:
- Are traveling to the U.S. solely to receive medical treatment
- If pregnant, that a client's primary reason for travel is not to give birth in the United States
- Plan to stay for a temporary and specified period of time, as corroborated by a letter from the client's treating physician or medical facility. CCA's dedicated team can help locate housing placement for those seeking mental health or substance use treatment.
- Have a permanent residence outside the United States as well as other binding ties (such as family and a permanent job) that will demonstrate that a client plans intend to return home at the end of their permitted stay
- Have a valid, unexpired passport enabling to the client to return to their home country at the end of their visit
- Have the financial means to pay for the needed travel and personal expenses during the client's U.S. visit, and have the financial means to pay for the costs of medical treatment.
- Depending on circumstances, a client may need to be examined by a US physician at their local US consulate / embassy office. CrossBridge Clinical Associates network of psychologists and physicians can conduct evaluations via secured video conference, or arrange for an in-person meeting at the consulate embassy office.
When the client visits the U.S. consulate to request the visa, they will have only a limited time to explain the medical necessity for mental health treatment. Having prepared before with a medical consultation, evaluation, and treatment plan can often make a significant impact on being approved for a B-2 Visa. At CrossBridge Clinical Associates "CCA", we can assist in the admissions to a hospital or residential treatment center prior to the meeting with the US Dept of State.
The U.S. State Department's regulations (22 C.F.R. § 41.31) describe the types of pleasure activities that qualify a foreign national for a B-2 visa:
Legitimate activities of a recreational character, including tourism, amusement, visits with friends or relatives, rest, medical treatment and activities of a fraternal, social or service nature.
CCA staff can help client in determining if any additional activities are part of a client's treatment plan for mental health struggles, including anxiety, depression, substance abuse, and emergence of a thought disorder.
Of note, a B-2 visa does NOT allow visits for the purpose of working for income or compensation of any form, including gifts or prize money. Nor does a B-2 visa allow conducting other business activities, such as attending trade shows, consulting, or business related activates.
In order to receive a B-2 on this basis, a client will need to prove that:
- They have received a particular medical / mental health / substance use diagnosis from a local physician, which requires treatment in the United States.
- A physician or medical facility / Treatment center in the U.S. is willing to admit and treat them
- The cost of transportation, treatment and all medical-related expenses have been estimated and someone will take responsibility for covering them
CCA staff has assisted clients from South America, Asia, and the Middle East in their admissions to highly rated and experienced treatment centers throughout the United States. CCA staff can also assist with the logistics of transportation, case management, and aftercare placements (i.e. halfway house) of clients seeking a B-2 Visa.