Faith Johnson
Tel: 360.236.2815

Washington is a state in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States located north of Oregon, west of Idaho, and south of the Canadian province of British Columbia on the coast of the Pacific Ocean. Be inspired and let your imagination soar as you explore beauty, history and opportunities in Washington State from the towering volcanic summit of Mt. Rainier to the sand beaches of Ocean Shores, the colorful vineyards of the Washington wine country to the natural beauty and character of Washington's rural communities and the stunning walls of the Grand Coulee; Washington is a breathtaking landscape for family, adventure and rejuvenation.


Direct Recruitment
Washington State provides recruitment services for providers that want to serve in rural and underserved areas statewide. Our goal is to ensure that the healthcare system in Washington State has the professionals needed to help build healthy communities.

Through a collaborative partnership called the Washington Resources Group (WRG), direct recruitment efforts are provided for the following types of practice sites:

  • Rural areas, including Rural Health Clinics and Community Health Centers
  • Tribal settings (Indian Health Service or self-governed)
  • Urban sites providing care to medically underserved patients
  • State correctional and mental health facilities

Health student/residency presentations

Members of the WRG travel throughout the state to present to primary care medical residents, medical students, dental students, and advanced registered nurse practitioners/physician assistant (ARNP/PA) students. The discussion includes working in rural/underserved Washington, loan repayment programs and finding the right opportunity after graduation. We're always happy to consider requests for presentations; if interested contact Faith Johnson

Key Points

Washington State is the BEST STATE IN THE NATION according to a new analysis by US News & World Report: https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/rankings 

Washington ranks #6 in Best Places to Practice 2019: Where Physician Can Thrive: WA Best Place to Practice 

Washington is the leading producer of apples, pears, and other fruit and has a fairly large wild horse population. Doctors who are happy at work are the majority. Off the job, Washington doctors are almost six times more likely to say they’re happy then not, and they‘re slightly less burned out than physicians in other states. Washington has a relatively expensive cost of living, but the state ranks well in terms of health system performance and overall lifestyle indicators. Suggested community: Richland Located at the confluence of the Yakima and Columbia rivers, Livability.com ranks Richland one of its best places to live. Richland is suburban town with beautiful parks, offers good schools, many housing options, and a socially engaged population. Transformation Talk: Health Equity Washington State has a generous State Loan Repayment Program. The goal of the program is to encourage primary care practitioners to serve in medically underserved areas. Practices serving Medicaid patients receive extra points towards becoming an approved site. To learn more about our program go to Washington State Loan Repayment Program.

  • Washington State is a very Family Medicine friendly state. Family Medicine physicians in rural communities can choose to delivery babies (including c-sections) and a number of other procedures.
  • General Surgeons are very important for RURAL areas. While a rural General Surgeon is not considered primary care they are primary for care and EMS in rural Washington State

Specialties Sought

Washington State has a focus on Primary Care Practitioners. 

WRG’s primary recruitment focus areas are:

  • Primary care physician (family medicine, general internal medicine, general surgery, OB/GYN, pediatrics and psychiatry)
  • Dentists 
  • Physician Assistants (PA) -certified
  • Advanced registered nurse practitioners (NP)


In addition WRG partners with Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC).

DOC operates 12 prison facilities providing health services for incarcerated individuals which includes on site medical, dental and mental health services. Many opportunities are available for health care professionals. For more information about DOC, visit www.doc.wa.gov


Associate Members


Washington is pleased to have Neighborcare Health as our premier Associate Member. 

A home is where the heart is, a place that's welcoming, supportive, provides peace of mind - Neighborcare Health is the largest provider of primary medical and dental care in Seattle for low income and uninsured families and individuals, serving our community for more than 40 years.

At Neighborcare Health, they believe everyone deserves and needs a place to call their health care home, regardless of income or insurance status. A health care home is where a team of medical, dental and mental health professionals work in collaboration with each patient to develop a personal health improvement plan. Each year they care for about 55,000 patients at 28 non-profit medical, dental and school-based clinics.


Registered Nurse Recruiting

  • Visit Washington Center for Nursing (WCN) https://www.wcnursing.org/ If you are interested in RURAL nursing opportunities or in a Community Health Center (urban/rural) directly contact the Workforce Advisor.
  •  Nurses interested in URBAN hospital work should visit the Hospital Association web page at  http://www.wsha.org/  this site will allow you to visit hospitals in your GEOGRAPHIC area of interest.
  • Additional urban nursing opportunities in Washington https://www.wcnursing.org/

From this page you can learn about working in a State Institution or Correctional Facility  http://agency.governmentjobs.com/washington/default.cfm

J-1 Visa Waiver Program

The Washington State Department of Health administers the J-1 Physician Visa Waiver program. The goal of the program is to increase the number of physicians available to work in rural and underserved areas of the state. The program is considered a secondary tool in recruitment, used when efforts to recruit a U.S. trained physician have been unsuccessful for an extended period of time.

Washington State will sponsor up to 30 waivers per federal fiscal year (October 1 through September 30).

  • At least 20 of the total waivers are available to primary care physicians.
  • Up to 10 of the total waivers are available to specialists.
  • On April 1 of each year, any waivers remaining unfilled will be available to either primary care or specialist physicians on a first-come, first-served basis.

Eligible employers in Washington must be located in a designated Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or whole-county Medically Underserved Area (MUA). We may sponsor up to five of the total waivers to physicians who will practice at healthcare facilities located in non-designated areas that meet the criteria in WAC 246-562-075. Washington does not require a minimum HPSA score or a specific facility type. For more information see: Applicant Eligibility Criteria. The J-1 Visa Application form (PDF) will be accepted beginning October 1 of each year.

J1 Contact Information

Amanda Latchaw
Office of Community and Rural Health
PO Box 47853
Olympia, WA 98504-7853
Phone: 360-236-2862
Fax: 360-236-2830
WA State J-1 Program Specifics


Washington Association for Community Health is providing Healthcare Apprenticeship opportunities!!


  • The Medical Assistant Apprenticeship Program is a 12 month program that prepares students to take the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) test through the National Healthcareer Association.  It has been approved by the State of Washington as an equivalent to an MA-C program at a community or technical college. Apprentices are co-enrolled as students of South Seattle College (SSC) and receive 56 credits toward an AA degree. The Association has been working with the Health Career Advancement Program (H-CAP) to register the MA Apprenticeship Program nationally. This National Registration will now allow any state or health center to utilize the program, the Associations curriculum, and apprentices will be able to access the credits associated with the now accredited program. The Association offers usual cohorts every April and October with cohort sizes capped at 40 apprentices.


  • The Dental Assistant Apprenticeship Program is a 12 month program that trains students to work as Registered Dental Assistants in Washington State, with an option to work toward their Certified Dental Assistant credential.  It is equivalent to a Dental Assisting program at a community or technical college. Functionally, apprentices should be turning over rooms, completing waste and waterline management, greeting patients, answering phones and scheduling patients, and beginning x-rays by the end of month 1. Taking x-rays, beginning to assist with exams, and shadowing restorative procedures by the end of month 2. Assisting with full exams, managing all records, transferring instruments, completing fluoride placement and beginning sterilization procedures by the end of month 3. The Association offers usual cohorts every May and November with cohort sizes capped at 20 apprentices. .


  • For more information: http://www.wacmhc.org/inreach 

Faith Johnson
Office of Community and Rural Health
P.O. Box 47853
Olympia, WA 98504-7853
Phone: 360.236.2815
Fax: 360-236-2830


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