What Diseases are Checked in an Immigration Medical Exam?

In an age of globalization and international mobility, the need for medical healthcare examinations is increasingly vital. According to government regulations in most countries, including Canada, individuals seeking Permanent Residency or other related immigration statuses must undergo an Immigration Medical Examination (IME) as part of the immigration application process. This article sheds light on the diseases checked in an immigration medical exam.

Understanding Immigration Medical Examination (IME)

  • Routine Medical Check-Up: IME is a standard medical check-up process that serves to assess the health status of prospective immigrants. Through it, potential health risks that may impact the applicant’s application can be identified early on.
  • Public Health and Safety: The primary purpose of the IME is to ensure that the individual doesn’t pose a threat to public health or safety when they arrive in the host country.

IME is not only for a specific group but also for various categories of immigrants. It covers a wide array of immigration statuses, including:

  • Permanent Residency Applicants: Those who are applying for permanent residency in the host country.
  • Refugees: People seeking refugee status or asylum.
  • Visa Applications: Individuals who are in the process of getting their visas approved.
  • Temporary Workers: Those who apply for a job in the host country on a temporary term.
  • Express Entry Program Applicants: Individuals who opt to go through the Express Entry program for faster immigration.
  • Family Sponsorship Applicants: People who are being sponsored by their family and applying for immigration.
  • Students: Individuals who plan to study in the host country.
  • Visitors: People who wish to visit the country for a certain period.

These categories highlight how vital the IME process is in ensuring public health safety in the migration process. For some comprehensive information about Canada PR medical exam, the Government of Canada stipulates that the IME is generally performed by Panel Physicians specifically approved for this task. 

The Role of Panel Physicians

Panel physicians play an essential role in the IME process. These healthcare providers have the Government of Canada’s recognition specifically for conducting the Immigration Medical Examination. They determine whether the applicant meets the health requirements outlined by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada. As part of the process, all applicants need to approach approved panel physicians for Visa applications.

Conditions Checked During an Immigration Medical Exam

During the IME, certain diseases and conditions are checked to ensure that immigrants do not pose potential health threats to the host country’s population.

  • Tuberculosis: This serious infectious disease is a primary focus during the IME since it poses significant health risks. An X-ray is typically performed to detect signs of the disease.
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs): Blood or urine tests are conducted to check for sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.
  • Mental Health: Mental health assessment is usually part of the IME, ensuring that the individual does not have severe conditions that could be a threat to themselves or others.
  • Physical Health: The physical examination is done to detect chronic or serious diseases that require ongoing medical attention or might cause a threat to public health.

Locations of Immigration Medical Clinics

Immigration medical clinics are established worldwide to serve immigration applicants. In the process, applicants are advised to seek a conveniently located immigration medical clinic in Thornhill or any other location. Here, they will undergo the medical examination as per the guidelines laid down by the respective government.

The Procedure of Immigration Medical Exam

The IME process is conducted in a systematic manner to ensure a comprehensive assessment of the potential immigrant’s health, involving some critical steps:

  • Identification of the Applicant: As a first step, the panel physician verifies the identity of the applicant. This step requires valid identity documents provided by the applicant.
  • Required Items: Apart from identification documents, applicants need to bring any corrective lenses they use and any essential medications. They need to be disclosed to the panel physician.
  • Health Assessment: The panel physician will then carry out several tests, as per the requirements laid down by the immigration authorities. One such requirement is the IMM 1017B Form: Upfront Medical Report Form, which details the specific tests to be conducted.

Submission of Medical Report

Once the health assessment is complete, the report is dispatched for further processing.

  • eMedical: The medical report can be sent electronically via eMedical, an online system that eases the transmission of medical examination results.
  • Local Immigration Office: Alternatively, the reports can be physically mailed to the local immigration office for assessment. This method applies especially when the medical system is not utilized.

In summary, the IME process not only checks the overall health status of the applicant but also verifies any medical history that may influence the application for immigration.


The IME is an integral and compulsory part of immigration processes worldwide, including Overseas Immigration to countries like Canada. The purpose behind these stringent IME and Visa length requirements is to safeguard the health of both immigrants and the citizens of the host nation. Therefore, complying with immigration laws, including health checks, can pave the way for a successful immigration application process. 

Be it for Permanent Residency, PR Sponsorship for Partners, Spouses, & Children, or immigration for Agricultural Workers, understanding what diseases are checked in an immigration medical exam is crucial for a smooth migration process.