Canada temporarily exempting some immigrants from medical exam

Shelby Thevenot
Published: June 30, 2021

Foreign nationals who are in Canada may not have to complete an medical exam as part of their immigration application.

When applying for permanent residence or for a permanent resident visa, applicants typically must provide an immigration medical exam or a unique medical identifier number from their previous medical exam.

The new public policy applies to foreign nationals in Canada who:

  • have applied for permanent residency and have not completed a new immigration medical exam;
  • have completed a medical exam within the last five years and were found to pose no risk to public health or safety, or complied with a requirement to report to health authorities for monitoring; and
  • have not left Canada for more than six months in the last year to live in a country that is on the federal government's list of countries requiring an immigration medical exam.

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Applicants' family members may also be eligible under this temporary public policy if they meet the criteria listed above, and are also living in Canada.

The measure is in effect now until December 28, 2021.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) says the new policy will help speed up immigration application timelines, allowing more temporary residents to get their full permanent residency status.

In turn, this will help support the government's goal of admitting 401,000 new immigrants this year. Although as of April, Canada is currently falling short of this target.

There are currently many immigration applicants in Canada. Throughout the pandemic, the government has focused its efforts on pathways to permanent residence for temporary residents. This was part of an effort to work toward immigration targets amid travel restrictions and other coronavirus-related measures.

There were two major ways the government did this. It used its already-existing Express Entry system to send Invitations to Apply for permanent residence to candidates who were most likely in Canada. Also in May, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino launched six temporary pathways to permanent residence for French speakers, essential workers and international student graduates. Within 25 hours, all 40,000 slots for graduates were used up. The government is still accepting applications for essential worker and French-speaking streams until November 5, or until spaces fill up.

Discover if You’re Eligible for Canadian Immigration

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