Nothing is more important than your health. This is universally recognised and China (or more specifically China’s Visa authorities and schools) are no exception to this. Those looking to live, work and teach in China will have to undergo at least one form of medical screening, be it pre-departure, on arrival, and in some cases both! Here’s a brief rundown of what you may be required to provide to the authorities and what to expect after arrival in China as far as medical checks are concerned.
Pre-Departure Medical Check
In order to obtain the ‘Z’ visa, some schools may require you to complete the following ‘physical examination record form’ whilst still in your home country.
Your school will notify you of whether they require this to be done as part of the visa application process; if in doubt, ask your Coordinator or your point of contact at the school.
We recommend going to see your Doctor/ GP to ask them to complete the form as fully as possible. A Doctor should be able to complete the majority of the form from your records without having to perform additional tests. In our experience, the form can be completed as follows and will be accepted by most provincial visa offices in China:
• The first page should be relatively easy for your doctor to complete;
• On the second page, in the top box, a comment such as ‘normal’ is sufficient;
• In the chest x-ray and ECG boxes, comment ‘not applicable’;
• The final box should include a comment stating that you are fit;
• Ask your doctor to then sign the form with a stamp from your doctors’ surgery/ medical centre/ hospital
Refer to our ‘example physical examination record form’ to see an example of a completed form that would usually be accepted. Please email email@example.com to request this example.
To date, the above has been successful with our candidates… however please note that should this less detailed form not be accepted and the full medical examination required, it is likely that you will need a full medical check from a private clinic, which can cost anywhere from £200/ $300. Some schools will cover the costs of this private examination, other schools will not.
This information regarding the medical check is purely a guide, and only for reference; policies of the Chinese Embassy regularly change.
Remember that often you will be required to gain a further medical checkup once you arrive in China, even if you have also had to complete this in your home country.
In-China Medical check
Once in China, if you have travelled on a Z working visa or are in the process of applying for one, you will be required to have an in-country medical check. This will always take place within the first 30 days of arrival in China; sometimes employers prefer to get it out of the way quickly, so be prepared to potentially have it in your first or second week!
It is a relatively simple procedure, that depending on the number of people being processed, will take between 30-60 minutes start to finish. Multiple people will be ‘processed’ simultaneously, and it is very efficient. It’s absolutely nothing to be concerned about!
Before your medical check it is important to you remember to:
- Skip breakfast the morning of the medical check
- Continue to take any prescribed medication and take it with you to the exam so any Doctors are aware
- Dress sensibly and comfortably. As X-rays will be conducted it’s not a good idea to wear a skirt or dress.
Your employer will accompany you to a country level government hospital for the medical check. You will be required to take the following with you:
a) Your passport
b) Photocopies of passport material pages including; picture and information page, visa page, entry stamp page
c) 5 passport style photos. Very often your employer will take you to a government authorized photography shop before-hand, these are always located close by or next to government hospitals and Public Security Bureaus
d) The medical check fee (this is usually a little over 400RMB, often your employer will pay)
The Medical is carried out on behalf of the The Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Public Security. They will be checking for the following throughout your Medical Check: Influenza, Poliomyelitis, Malaria, Dengue fever, Relapsing fever, Epidemic typhus HIV and AIDS, Hepatitis B, Plague, Cholera, Yellow fever and other infectious diseases required for disclosure by the State Council.
Entry and residence will be denied for those testing positive or showing condition of any of the above in addition to: Severe Psychosis, Infectious Tuberculosis disease and any other physical or mental conditions, deemed to be a threat to China’s health and safety standards.
You’ll usually be required to go to different rooms for the following examinations:
- Blood test with sterile needles and gloves
- Urine Test
- Blood pressure check
- Pulse regularity check
- Stethoscope check for breathing regularity
- X-Rays (usually of the torso)
- Vision test
- Height and Weight check
The follow-up Health Certificate will usually take a couple of working days to process following your check. All being well, your employer will register this with the authorities.
To view further teacher resources visit our helpful ‘living in China’ page.Share: