Consular Processing and the Medical Exam: “Hey, You’re Not My Family Doctor!

Consular Processing and the Medical Exam: “Hey, You’re Not My Family Doctor!

When you have reached the part in the K-1 process where your foreign-born fiancé or spouse (CR-1) is ready to schedule and take his medical exam you can definitely see the light at the end of the long immigration tunnel.

To make certain that your foreign-born fiancé or spouse continues to walk toward the light AND that long awaited flight to the United States, there are a few points(ers) about the medical exam that should be noted:

  1. Medical exams are held only at Department of State/Centers for Disease Control registered clinics, period! If your fiancé or spouse is aware of a clinic “across town” with more affordable fees, a shorter wait time, glossy waiting room magazines or off-street parking—he can’t decide to take his exam at that facility. The list of authorized doctors (sometimes referred to as “panel physicians”) can be found on the U.S. Embassy’s website (or the Embassy will email the list to your foreign-born fiancé at the appropriate time in the process). Note that the “list” can only be a list of one. So appointments should be made sooner than later. Check back often, as the list is always subject to change.
  2. Your foreign-born fiancé or spouse may not use his or her private, family doctor, PERIOD! (Please see above) The word “collusion” has been in the news lately—same scrutiny/safeguard.       The doctor must be able to make an independent finding without regard to any outside influences.       Furthermore, whatever the doctor says stands. The Embassy will not intervene on the behalf of your foreign-born fiancé or spouse. Furthermore, I cannot intervene on your fiancé’s or spouse’s behalf unless there is medical malpractice, negligence and or illegal conduct at the facility.
  3. Depending on the Post, extra medical screening precautions will be taken. In recent years past, Brazil had an outbreak of the Zika virus.       Therefore, the panel physicians in Brazil will engage in a higher level of screening for Zika in Brazil than say panel physicians in Denmark (I doubt if intending immigrants are screened for Zika in Denmark—but you get my point).

Many foreign-born fiancés and spouses are understandably anxious about the mandatory medical exam: There are questions about vaccinations, screening for tuberculosis and other infectious diseases, early pregnancies, a “failed” medical exam in the past, tattoos, chronic illnesses and diseases, ongoing poor health and doctor-patient confidentiality— just to name a few concerns.

If you wish to discuss your specific medical exam Red-Flag Issues or you want a complete list of medical exam pointers, let’s talk (send me an email)!

Source material, AILA 2017 Conference, Immigrant Visa Consular Processing

Many thanks,


Fiance Spouse Visa Lawyer