Reasons Why The U.S. Government Requires Foreign Visitors To Take A Medical Exam

As someone who is just legally visiting the United States, you may, at any time, choose to stay longer. However, if you want to change your visiting status, you must undergo an immigration medical exam. This may seem strange or unreasonable to you, but there are reasons why the U.S. government requires that you have this exam. 

The Government Wants to Be Sure You Are Not a Bio-Terrorist

Bio-terrorists are people who visit America infected with a communicable disease that can cause an epidemic among U.S. citizens. Many of these diseases have been wiped out here in the U.S. for decades, but because of the growing number of "anti-vaxxers," parents who do not vaccinate their children, these diseases are starting anew in this country. It only takes one bio-terrorist infected with a previously-eradicated disease to start a widespread health issue. The required medical exam clears you of all communicable diseases, and any suspicion that you may be a bio-terrorist.

The Exam Helps Protect Your Health, Too

If you did not receive vaccines as an infant, child, or adult in your home country, the exam helps protect you, too. You will be required to take at least the first doses of every vaccine you have never had. This protects you from any and all contact with someone who could make you sick, and/or potentially cause your death from an illness you did not expect to get. The longer your stay here, the more likely you will be expected to receive additional vaccines and immunizations. 

Visas and Green Cards Give You the Stepping Stones to Becoming a Citizen

If you are requesting a work or education visa, you already know that you plan to stay in the U.S. for a while. A green card is necessary if you are going to stay here long after you have completed your degree or your work has ended. Both are stepping stones to full citizenship, as is the medical exam.

The exam just clears you to get the documents that will lead to citizenship, if and when you decide that is what you want to do. If you were to become a U.S. citizen, you are required to promise to uphold the safety and well-being of those around you, which is another reason for requiring the medical exam. The government needs to know that you are serious about your good intentions toward American citizens before it will allow you to stay longer.