Who needs a medical examination?
Foreign nationals who come to Canada must be admissible on health grounds. IRCC assesses this by asking applicants to take a medical examination. If you do not pass the medical examination, you may be inadmissible to Canada.
However, not everyone applying to come to Canada will require a medical examination. Generally, if you plan to visit Canada for less than 6 months as a temporary resident, you do not need a medical examination.
But, you will need a medical examination if you:
Apply for temporary residence and plan to stay in Canada for more than 6 months, and you are from a prescribed country.
Plan to work in a job that requires close contact with people regardless of how long you stay in Canada. For example, healthcare workers and agricultural workers.
Apply for a super visa.
Apply for permanent residence (PR) or claim refugee protection.
Do family members need medical examinations?
First of all, for the purpose of immigration, family members include your spouse or partner, dependent children, and children of your dependent children.
Generally speaking, if your family member comes to Canada with you, they must include a medical examination in your application when the conditions in the above section apply.
If you are applying for temporary residence, but your family member is not coming with you, they do not need a medical examination.
However, if you are applying for PR, regardless of whether your family member is coming with you or not, they must get a medical examination.
There is an exception for refugee claims. Refugee claimants’ family members do not need medical examination if they are not accompanying.
Family member’s medical inadmissibility
In PR applications, if your family member is medically inadmissible, you will also become inadmissible.
In temporary residence applications, your family member’s condition will not cause you inadmissible. However, their visa or permit may be refused based on medical inadmissibility.
When do I need to get a medical examination and how long is it valid for?
Depending on the type of your application, you may need to take a medical examination before submitting your application. For example, most of the temporary residence applications, and PR applications under Express Entry. In other situations, you may get a medical examination after you submit your application, such as sponsorship.
You must complete your medical examination with a doctor, also known as a penal physician, appointed by IRCC.
Lastly, a medical examination is valid for one year. Sometime, IRCC may issue a temporary public policy that extends the validity of your medical examination.
What is medical inadmissibility and who may be medically inadmissible to Canada?
According to the immigration law, a person may be inadmissible on health grounds if they have a medical condition that is:
likely to be a danger to public health.
likely to be a danger to public safety.
might reasonably be expected to cause excessive demand on health or social services.
If you are a foreign national, you may be inadmissible to Canada on health grounds. However, after you become a permanent resident, medical inadmissibility will no longer apply to you. It means you will not lose your PR status because you develop a medical condition.
Note that there are some exceptions to medical inadmissibility for some PR applicants and refugee claimants. We will discuss these in the following sections.
What is a danger to public health as medical inadmissibility?
A danger to public health means that you have a health condition that is infectious. Further, the disease must potentially affect other people living in Canada.
Sometimes, if you have been in close contact with someone who has such a health condition, it may be considered a danger to public health, even if you do not have the same condition.
Infectious diseases include but are not limited to active tuberculosis and active syphilis.
Please note that HIV/AIDS is not a danger to public health under the immigration law. However, applicants with HIV/AIDS may be inadmissible on the excessive demand provision.
Further, it does not need to be 100% sure that your condition will be a danger to public health. If IRCC believes your condition will, more likely than not (balance of probability), be a danger to public health, then you will become inadmissible.
What is a danger to public safety?
A danger to public safety means a health condition that may cause you sudden loss of capacity. Or, your behaviour becomes unpredictable or violent that may be harmful for other people.
These conditions include, but not limited to, certain impulsive sociopathic behaviour disorders, some aberrant sexual disorders such as pedophilia, and some organic brain syndromes associated with risk of harm to others.
Again, if IRCC believes your condition will, more likely than not (balance of probability), be a danger to public safety, then you will become inadmissible.
What is excessive demand on social and health services?
Excessive demand on social and health services means, to treat your health condition, you will need more than triple the average Canadian per capita health services and social services costs over 5 consecutive years, or, by adding you to existing waiting lists, you would increase morbidity or the mortality rate in Canada.
The triple average Canadian per capita health services and social services costs for 2022 is $120, 285 over 5 years (or $24, 057 per year).
Health services mean any health services, laboratory services, the supply of pharmaceuticals, and related devices. Such services may include family physicians and other paramedical professionals.
Social services mean residential or institutional care, and related devices. Such services may include home care and personal support services. Note that social services no longer include special education and social/vocational rehabilitation services
For the purposes of excessive demands, these services must be public funded. This means more than half of the funds are from the government or public agencies.
Solutions for excessive demands as medical inadmissibility
Despite the complexity of medical inadmissibility, there are a few approaches that you may use to address excessive demands on social and health services if they apply to you.
Firstly, you should check whether you are exempt from the excessive demand provision. The excessive demand provision does not apply to:
Secondly, whether the anticipated costs will be reasonably higher than triple the average Canadian per capita over 5 years.
Last but not least, you may check whether the social services and health services you or your family rely on are publicly funded, and whether you have financial ability to mitigate the costs.
Solutions for medical inadmissibility
If you have been found inadmissible to Canada, you may not be able to come to Canada. If you are in Canada, this finding may trigger the removal process.
However, depending on the situation, there may be solutions for you to overcome this problem. You may look at a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) or Humanitarian and Compassionate (H&C) grounds.
What do we do?
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