Saturday October 2, 2021


by Rabindra Singh

In accordance with recently updated requirements issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently updated guidance in the USCIS Policy Manual regarding health-related grounds of inadmissibility.

Beginning October 1, 2021, applicants (in the United States or overseas) who are required to undergo the immigration medical examination must complete the COVID-19 vaccine series before the civil surgeon can complete the immigration medical examination and sign Form I-693. 

This USCIS guidance applies prospectively to all Forms I-693 signed by a civil surgeon on or after October 1, 2021.

On August 17, 2021, the CDC released an update to the Vaccination Technical Instructions for Civil Surgeons, requiring applicants subject to the immigration medical examination to complete the COVID-19 vaccine series (currently one or two doses, depending on formulation) and provide documentation of vaccination to the civil surgeon before completion of the immigration medical examination.

In general, those applying to become a lawful permanent resident, and other applicants as required, must undergo an immigration medical examination to show they are free from any conditions that would render them inadmissible under health-related grounds.

Some vaccines are expressly required by statute. Others are required because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have determined they are in the interest of public health. 

The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) specifies the following vaccinations:

  • Mumps, measles, rubella;
  • Polio;
  • Tetanus and diphtheria toxoids; 
  • Pertussis;
  • Haemophilius influenza type B; and
  • Hepatitis B.

CDC requires the following additional vaccines for immigration purposes:

  • Varicella;
  • Influenza;
  • Pneumococcal pneumonia;
  • Rotavirus;
  • Hepatitis A;
  • Meningococcal; and
  • COVID-19.

Note that If the applicant has not received any of the listed vaccinations and the vaccinations are age appropriate and medically appropriate, the applicant has a Class A condition and is inadmissible. 

For more information pertaining to the new USCIS guidance, and/or assistance with filing Adjustment of Status applications, please call our office at (312)-291-1234 or email us at

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