Prior to obtaining a green card, applicants must submit a medical exam on FORM I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record, as applicants with certain communicable diseases, physical or mental disorders associated with harmful behavior, or those with drug abuse or addiction problems are not allowed to enter the United States.  USCIS officers use Form I-693 to determine whether an applicant for an immigration benefit is inadmissible under the health-related grounds of inadmissibility.  There is no federal statute or regulations that sets the validity period of Form I-693; rather, USCIS has established the validity period by policy.  For example, in June 2014, USCIS began limiting the validity period for Form I-693 to only one year.  Since then, there has been delays in adjudication of green cards, due to requests for evidence for applicants to submit new medical examinations.

USCIS has issued guidance indicating that starting November 1, 20018 the medical exams recorded on Form I-693, will be valid for a two-year period following the date of when the civil surgeon signs the form instead of one year.  Furthermore, applicants will need to submit the form within 60 days of the medical examination.

This policy will hopefully alleviate the numerous Requests for Evidence that have been issued for updated medical exams prior to the adjudication of cases.  Please note, that a USCIS officer still has discretion to request new medicals if the officer has reason to believe something has changed and a health related ground of inadmissibility exists.

The announcement may be found on USCIS’ website at