If you have ever applied for a travel visa overseas, then you probably know that there are a lot of requirements for being granted access to that country. If you are an immigrant, the requirements double in number; and the process of getting official permission to move to another country may take longer.

Besides the proof of identity, employment history, and financial capability, another aspect that embassies inspect in immigrants is their health. That is why potential immigrants are required to undergo medical examinations, which are considerably stricter and more specific compared to when merely applying for medical visas for holidays or short-term trips.

What are medical examinations? 

Individuals applying to settle permanently in another country are in a delicate position, health-wise. Depending on where they intend to move and where they are from, the change in climate, the outbreak of a disease, and the availability of appropriate medical care and institutions in the second country are some of the critical factors that embassies consider when people move to and from countries. Sometimes, they also need to find out whether the immigrant is at the risk of being a carrier of a disease.

Medical examinations are therefore required to ensure the safety of both the person planning to move and the population of the destination country.

Where are medical examinations administered? 

The location for the medical examination varies from country to country. Some embassies will require you to submit the results of the test before your take off, while others will require you to go to their country and take the test in a government accredited hospital.

If the latter is the case, it is advisable to have a prior medical check-up in your home country first, so you will see if you have a previously unknown health condition, and to avoid any hassle in the hospital of the country you plan to immigrate to afterwards.

What is involved in a medical examination? 

Despite the differences across continents, the tests that an immigrant undergoes are generally the same. Here are some of the conventional medical tests:

  • General physical exam
  • Vision test (test for near- or farsightedness, and colour blindness test)
  • Complete blood test (Blood count and blood sugar levels)
  • Serology (tests the serum), which may include tests for HIV, Hepatitis, and Syphilis)
  • ECG for older immigrants
  • Spirometry (measures the air capacity of the lungs)
  • Chest X-ray
  • Complete urinalysis
  • Stool test to check for ova, parasites, or cysts

If you have already established that you have a prior medical condition, the number of these tests might increase or decrease depending on the circumstance.

Always be ready 

Being healthy is often a requirement for any activity in life. Immigration is just one of these. Staying safe, taking care of your body, and having a clean medical record will go a long way compared to choosing to do otherwise.

Make sure to visit your local doctor regularly and ask for medical advice on your concerns if needed.

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