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What health conditions might impact my visa application?

On Behalf of | May 31, 2023 | Visas |

People need to meet specific requirements to enter the U.S. For example, you usually cannot secure a visa if immigration authorities have reason to believe you pose harm to yourself and others. They might arrive at this conclusion not just by looking at your criminal record but also by examining your medical history.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) generally bars individuals with the following conditions from entering the country:

Communicable diseases

This list includes contagious diseases like gonorrhea, syphilis, tuberculosis and COVID-19. In 2009, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) removed HIV from the list.

Physical and mental disorders

You will likely fail to secure a visa if you have physical or mental disorders that can lead to harmful and violent behavior. Even if you no longer have the disorder, authorities might still deny your application if they believe your condition can reoccur.

Drug addiction

A history of using drugs beyond experimentation and medical applications can result in authorities denying your visa request.

Lack of vaccination

Authorities generally require applicants to have vaccinations against certain diseases, such as influenza, mumps, measles, rubella and COVID-19.


In some instances, authorities might bar pregnant women from entering the U.S. This rule prevents birth tourism, a practice wherein a woman gives birth in the U.S., so their child automatically gets U.S. citizenship. If you are pregnant, you must be able to prove that you have a valid reason for visiting the U.S. and not just to secure citizenship.

Health-related grounds for inadmissibility tend to change as new diseases and treatments emerge. Understanding the most recent guidelines can help you prepare the necessary documentation and evidence and improve your chances of a successful application.


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