Settling in the United States of America is the dream of almost everyone. However, to be a permanent resident of U.S. you need to go through some processes to be eligible for permanent residence.
If you are looking for a U.S. green card, the Immigration Medical Exam is obligatory to pass. Just like a car owner needs a license to drive the car. The purpose of the exam is to determine whether you are healthy enough and not suffering from any kind of illness that harms others.
The medical exam cannot be undergone by a regular doctor, instead, a civil surgeon is eligible to conduct the exam, granted by immigration authorities. These surgeons are specifically trained to perform a green card medical exam and related issues.
Where to Find Authorized Civil Surgeon?
Applying for immigration outside of the United States, through the U.S. embassy or consulate, you will be given a list of authorized physicians before going through a visa interview. Moreover, you can also access the list through the state department website.
If you are applying for a green card within the United States, you can view the list of trained civil surgeons from the USCIS Civil Surgeon Locator.
What to bring to the Exam?
If you are going through a physical examination for a US visa, make sure to gather the following.
- Provide a report of the condition and any specific educational or supervision requirements from your family with learning disabilities or mental retardation.
- Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and vaccination record
- Government-issued photo identification like driving license or valid passport. If you are 14 years or younger, bring the necessary documents revealing your name, place of birth, parent’s full name, and date of birth. A birth certificate with an English translation or an affidavit is enough to prove your identity
- Vaccination or immunization records like Hepatitis A, pneumococcal influenza, meningococcal disease, OPV, DT, DTaP, varicella, MMR, Td, hepatitis B, IPV, and Rotavirus.
- Medical insurance card (make sure that they accept your medical plan).
- Payment (make sure to verify the types of payment they accept). If you are looking for cost savings, just call on different doctors and know their exam fees.
Immigration Medical Exam: What do they check?
The doctor will go through your vaccination reports and medical history and give you a physical examination, a blood test, and a chest X-ray. Children under 15 will not go through blood tests or chest X-rays.
If you are pregnant, your X-ray can be postponed upon your request. The request will be accepted or forbidden depending on your country.
The doctor will further look at your eyes, throat, nose, ears, lymph nodes, heart, external genitalia, skin, and lungs. Moreover, the doctor will also recommend you vaccinations you are lacking, based on a list of required vaccinations.
Failing U.S Immigration Medical Exam
If you are facing an irregular heartbeat or suffering from a cold, you don’t have to worry about getting rejected all the way through. The doctor will examine only for some conditions that are relevant to the immigration process. You don’t have to be a super guy without any disease or illness.
Certain conditions that make you inadmissible to the United States include:
- A communicable disease of public health significance. The major ones are infectious leprosy, active tuberculosis, and venereal diseases.
- A physical or mental disorder along with a history of behavior associated with a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the applicant.
- Addiction to drugs
Submitting the Results of your Immigration Medical Exam
If you are applying for US green card outside the United States through the U.S. embassy, the physician will either hand over the exam results to submit to the U.S. consulate or carry them to the visa interview.
Dr. Faika Khan is a family medicine doctor and founder of UrgentWay in New York and is affiliated with NYU and Plainview Hospital. She received her medical degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine and has been in practice for over 10 years.