Monday 13 October 2014

Cross boarder medical checks

To move from the UK to South Africa in 2011, prior to obtaining our visas we were required to have a chest X-ray to check we were free of TB, a form signed by our doctor to confirm we were sane and police checks.

To move to Dubai we are required upon entry to have a chest X-ray to check we are free of TB and blood tests to ensure we are free from HIV/AIDS and Leprosy. We are not however required to have police checks, but I will be having one done as I work in Child Protection and I teach so know I will be asked to provide evidence that I am safe to work in this field in both Dubai and for when we eventually return to the UK.

Two issues have arisen from this.

  • Since being in South Africa we have both tested negative for HIV/AIDS, so if we have contracted either HIV/AIDS or TB, we would have contracted it in South Africa, but where would the UAE return us to? As we've never been tested for Leprosy, that would be a harder question to answer. According to a report in the Guardian in June 2014, Leprosy is rare in the UK, however in South Africa, February 2014, there was an increase in diagnosed cases. And as far as I am aware, apart from the additional stress caused by yet another relocation, we are both still sane.
  • If we were returning to the UK where no visa's are required for us as we are British, no health tests are requested at all, however I would be asked for a police check/CRB when I applied for work, so it's only common sense that's telling me to get one done before we leave here. However for immigration purposes, depending on what country you arrive from to the UK there is screening for TB.
I'm sure it would be difficult to police returnees to their country of origin and I'm not sure what questions may arise when applying for work, utilities, bank accounts etc when asked for proof of address for the previous ? years.

No inoculations are required to enter South Africa on holiday, which concerns me with the current situation with Ebola and the spread of the disease by tourists, businesses travellers and health care workers treating the disease. There are no confirmed cases of Ebola in South Africa at the moment, unlike the UK and a Nigerian woman who was in transit died in Abu Dhabi this week. As we are relocating from Africa I'm making the assumption that further screening may take place.

I'd be interested to know if people relocating from anywhere in the world to another country, in particular the UK, have been required to have health checks and what is the strangest test you've been required to have?

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