Talamantes Immigration Law Firm, APC discusses the immigration medical exam in the green card process.

Immigration Medical Exam

  • Jul 15 2019

To become a legal permanent resident of the United States, you will need to undergo an immigration medical exam. Also referred to as a green card medical exam, the evaluation is a required element of the green card application process for public health reasons. With the health of the U.S. as its key purpose, those with certain health conditions as well as those lacking certain immunizations are barred from obtaining permanent residency.

What Happens at an Immigration Medical Exam?

To begin the process of an immigration medical exam, you must first select the doctor who will perform the exam. The doctor must be approved by the U.S. government to conduct an immigration medical exam. To verify that a doctor has been approved, check with your local consulate.

You must prepare for the medical exam by gathering the requisite paperwork. Bring your passport or other government-issued photo identification to your exam appointment. Also, make sure you bring your vaccination records and the requisite fee. The fee will vary by doctor. Other paperwork you may need to bring will largely depend on your medical history. The doctor will verify whether or not you have had all the required vaccinations. While some of the vaccinations are explicitly required under the Immigration and Nationality Act, the rest of them are required due to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determining that the vaccine is critical to public health. The required vaccinations include:

  • Mumps, measles, rubella
  • Polio
  • Tetanus and diphtheria toxoids
  • Pertussis
  • Hepatitis B
  • Influenza
  • Hepatitis A
  • Meningococcal

At the exam, your doctor will ask questions about your medical history and perform a physical examination. The physical examination will include the doctor looking at your eyes, ears, nose, and throat. The doctor will also evaluate the condition of your heart, lungs, abdomen, lymph nodes, skin, and extremities. Additionally, the doctor will order lab work such as a blood test as well as a chest x-ray.

In addition to evaluating your physical health, the doctor will evaluate your mental health. The mental health status portion of the medical exam will evaluate your intelligence, comprehension, judgment, mood, and behavior. If an applicant is found to suffer from a physical or mental disorder that involves potentially harmful behaviors, the applicant will be deemed inadmissible.

The medical examination report generated from the immigrant medical examination is valid for no more than one year. The doctor may send the results directly to the consulate if you are applying for a visa overseas. If you have already filed an adjustment of status application, you should provide your exam results at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) green card interview. USCIS, in turn, uses the report to determine whether or not the green card applicant meets the required health standards. You may be inadmissible due to health-related grounds if you:

  • Have a communicable disease with significant implications for public health
  • Fail to provide proof of required vaccinations
  • Have a physical or mental disorder that is associated with harmful behavior
  • Struggle with drug abuse or addiction

Chula Vista Immigration Lawyer Representing Green Card Applicants

Applying for a green card is an important and very involved process. The medical examination is just one of the many steps. Questions about how to properly navigate the application procedure are common and Talamantes Immigration Law Firm, APC is here to answer them. Contact us today.

Posted in: Immigration Law