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The medical grounds of inadmissibility, the medical examination of foreign nationals, and the vaccinations administered to foreign nationals are designed to protect the health of the United States population. The immigration medical examination, the resulting medical examination report, and the vaccination record provide the information U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) uses to determine if a foreign national meets the health-related standards for admissibility.
Any of these four basic medical conditions may make an applicant on health-related grounds:
Communicable disease of public health significance
An immigrant’s failure to show proof of required vaccinations
Physical or mental disorder with associated harmful behavior
Drug abuse or addiction
The immigration medical examination is not a complete physical examination. Its purpose is to screen for certain medical conditions relevant to U.S. immigration law. The U.S. government doesn’t require the doctor to evaluate you for any conditions except those the U.S. Public Health Service specifies for U.S. immigration purposes. Likewise, the government doesn’t require the doctor to provide you with diagnosis or treatment even if he or she discovers other issues related to your health. This examination is not a substitute for a full physical examination, consultation, diagnosis, or treatment by your primary health care provider.
What to Take to your Medical Exam
In preparation for the medical examination, you will need to take several items. This list will vary based on the location of your exam. If you are attending an exam outside the United States, the U.S. embassy will give you specific guidance for your country. However, you will generally need to take the following items to an immigration medical exam:
Valid passport or other government-issued photo identification
Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record (if adjusting status)
The required fee (varies by doctor)
Required number of U.S. passport photos (if applying abroad – check with consular office)
Report of the condition and any special education or supervision requirements (if anyone in your family is immigrating with learning disabilities)
List of medications (if you are being treated for a chronic medical condition or taking medications on a regular basis)
Tuberculosis certificate from your doctor (if you’ve had a previous positive skin test for tuberculosis) proving that you were adequately treated
Certificate of clearance signed by a doctor or public health official, proving that you were adequately treated (if you have had syphilis)
If you have a history of harmful or violent behavior resulting in injury to people or animals, information that will allow the doctor to determine whether the behavior was related to a psychiatric or medical problem, or to drug or alcohol use
If you have been treated or hospitalized for psychiatric or mental illness, or alcohol or drug abuse, written certification including the diagnosis, length of treatment, and your prognosis