Civil Surgeons and the Green Card Lottery

The Green Card Lottery process is slightly different from other immigration pathways to the United States, but there are many similarities, such as the use of a Civil Surgeon.

Knowing every part of the visa process to the United States better prepares immigrants for a smooth transition to their new home country.

Though you may not have to deal with a civil surgeon right away during the visa application process, by becoming familiar with them now, you can be better prepared for that step in your transition.

What is a Civil Surgeon?

A civil surgeon is a medical doctor in the country who has been qualified to conduct medical exams for United States immigration (USCIS). In order to become a Civil Surgeon, doctors must apply using the prospective civil surgeon process on USCIS website.

Civil surgeons must conform to certain guidelines in their examinations as according to the Center of Disease Control. This organization regulates the technical instructions for examinations, tuberculosis detection, vaccinations, assessment of mental disorders and substance abuse, syphilis and Hansen ’s disease and any further updates.

The primary job of a civil surgeon is to ensure that incoming immigrants will not pose health issues upon their entry to the United States.

When Will I Use a Civil Surgeon?

Every immigrant will at one point in their application will have to have a medical examination performed by a civil surgeon. The dual purpose for this requirement is to make sure that a person is healthy enough to become a permanent resident and that they won’t bog down the health system of the United States.

Reasonably healthy people with the usual battery of vaccinations can expect to be examined quickly and to be accepted.

How Do I Find a Civil Surgeon?

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) offers a convenient civil surgeon locator on their website. Immigrants looking for a civil surgeon in the united states can search by ZIP code (which will return the nearest civil surgeon) or can select a state (which will return all civil surgeons in that state.

What Kind of Documentation Will I Have to Give the Civil Surgeon?

When you reach the stage in your application where you need to visit a civil surgeon it is a good idea to gather your medical records in case the civil surgeon may need to see them. These records may include:

  • Vaccination records
  • Records of surgery
  • History of contagious diseases
  • Mental health histories

The interviewing USCIS officer will be able to more accurately tell you what information you will need to bring with you.