Who may perform an immigration medical examination

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Only physicians authorized by IRCC may carry out immigration medical examinations.

Technical instructions that define the actions and management of the authorized physicians who perform the immigration medical examinations are located on the Panel Physician Program webpage.

Using an alternate medical practitioner

In exceptional circumstances, an applicant may not be in a position to access a panel physician. In Canada, due to IRCC’s obligations under the Official Languages Act, the Migration Health Branch may temporarily authorize a non-panel physician to perform an immigration medical examination (known as “dispensation”) for in-Canada applicants.

Procedures for requesting dispensation

Dispensation granting authority rests with the Migration Health Branch. In all circumstances, the Migration Health Branch determines if the request for dispensation is reasonable in consultation with the appropriate regional medical office and/or migration office.

In accordance with the Official Languages Act, dispensation is considered for applicants in Canada when no panel physician is able to offer services in the applicant’s preferred official language within either 250 km or 4 hours (one way) of the applicant’s residence. Requests for dispensation must be submitted directly by the applicant or their representative through the IRCC Call Centre. The Call Centre directs all dispensation requests and should ensure that the applicant or the applicant’s representative has provided both of the following:

  • the doctor’s contact information
  • confirmation that the doctor is willing to conduct the medical examination
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