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The Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) is a neutral, non-profit organization that deals with immigration formalities for nurses and is internationally recognized for its authority on education, registration, licensure of nurses and other health care professionals. CGFNS protects the public by ensuring that nurses and other healthcare professionals educated in countries other than the United States are eligible and qualified to meet licensure, immigration and other practice requirements in the United States.


The story behind CGFNS International (formerly the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools) begins in the late 1960s when the United States experienced an increase in nurse migration from other countries. Immigration officials had a difficult time identifying who of the nurses educated abroad and applying for nursing occupational visas would be eligible for licensure as a registered nurse in the United States. On average, only 15 to 20% of nurses educated outside the United States were passing the U.S. registered nurse licensure exam on their first attempt.

CGFNS offers two important training programmes to impart the necessary skills and competency required for nurses to obtain registration / licensure as a nurse in the United States.

The Programs offered are:
CGFNS Certification program (CP)
CGFNS Credentials Evaluation Service (CES)

A third program, CGFNS Credentials Verification Service (CVS) for New York State independently collects and verifies the authenticity of the applicant's educational and licensure / registration credentials. Once verified, the credentials are forwarded to the New York State Education Department to be evaluated as part of the application formalities. A fourth program, Visa screen TM satisfies the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS).

The CGFNS Certification Program Certificate is required of internationally educated registered nurses by a majority of U.S. states in order to take the NCLEX-RN licensure examination. CGFNS Certification Program Certificate holders consistently have a higher rate of success on the NCLEX-RN examination than internationally educated nurses who do not hold the Certificate.

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