Who needs an x-ray or medical examination

If you are applying for a visa you may need a chest x-ray or medical examination as evidence of your good health.

Who needs a chest x-ray

If you need to have a chest x-ray, you must use a panel physician and tell them what type of visa you are applying for.

Panel physicians are doctors and radiologists who are approved to complete chest x-rays and medical examinations for New Zealand visa applications.

Find a radiologist or doctor near you

Children under 11 years of age and pregnant women do not need to have a chest x-ray unless a special report is needed.

You will stay for less than 6 months

If you will stay in New Zealand for less than 6 months, you normally do not need to get a chest x-ray unless you are applying for a Recognised Seasonal Employer limited visa, or we ask you to.

You will stay for 6 months or more

If you will stay in New Zealand for 6 months or more, you must have a chest x-ray if you:

  • are a citizen of a country that does not have a low incidence of tuberculosis (TB), or
  • have spent more than 3 months in the last 5 years in a country that does not have a low incidence of TB.

Countries with a low incidence of TB

You will stay for more than 12 months

If you will stay for more than 12 months, you must have a chest x-ray no matter where you are from.

If you are applying for another visa while you are in New Zealand, the time you have already spent here counts towards the 12 months.

Different rules apply if you are applying for a student visa.

You plan to stay in New Zealand permanently

If you are applying to stay in New Zealand permanently, and do not already have a resident visa, you must have a chest x-ray no matter where you are from.

You are applying for a student visa

You do not need to get a chest x-ray if you are applying for a student visa and staying for less than 6 months.

You must have a chest x-ray if you are applying for a student visa and:

  • staying for 6 months or more and you:
    • are from a country that does not have a low incidence of TB, or
    • have spent more than 3 months in the last 5 years in a country that does not have a low incidence of TB.
  • staying for 12 months or more and you are applying for a student visa to be a PhD, MFAT-funded scholarship or exchange student.

Countries with a low incidence of TB

Foreign fee paying students

You do not need to get a chest x-ray if you are staying for more than 6 months as a foreign fee paying student and you are:

  • from a country with a low incidence of TB, and
  • in the last 5 years you have not spent more than 3 months in a country that does not have a low incidence of TB.

Fee Paying Student Visa

You are applying for a Recognised Seasonal Employer Limited Visa

If you are applying for a Recognised Seasonal Employer Limited Visa, you must have a chest x-ray no matter how long you will stay in New Zealand.

You had a chest x-ray for an earlier visa application

Even if you sent us a chest x-ray certificate with an earlier visa application, you must get another x-ray if:

  • it has been more than 3 years since you had the last one, or
  • you have spent more than 6 months in a row in a country that does not have a low incidence of TB since you had the last x-ray.

Countries with a low incidence of TB

Evidence of your chest x-ray

When you have had your chest x-ray, you must provide evidence you have done so.

You can do this by providing us with an eMedical reference number, or a medical certificate if you are in a country that does not have a panel physician.

Evidence of your good health

Getting an x-ray or medical examination

Who needs to get a medical examination

If you need to have a medical examination, you must use a panel physician and tell them what type of visa you are applying for.

You will stay for less than 12 months

If you will stay in New Zealand for less than 12 months, you normally do not need to have a medical examination unless the visa you apply for will allow you to stay for more than 12 months, or we ask you to have one.

You will stay for more than 12 months

You must have a medical examination if you will stay in New Zealand for more than 12 months.

If you are already in New Zealand, the time you have already spent here will count towards the 12 months.

Different rules apply if you are applying for a student visa.

You plan to stay in New Zealand permanently

If you are applying to stay in New Zealand permanently, and do not already have a resident visa, you must have a medical examination no matter where you are from.

You are applying for a student visa

If you stay for more than 12 months, you must have a medical examination if you:

  • are applying for a student visa to be a PhD, MFAT-funded scholarship or exchange student
  • have used intravenous drugs
  • have had a blood transfusion
  • have participated in or been exposed to any activity which may have exposed you to a serious infectious disease, such as HIV, or Hepatitis B or C.

If you are applying for a Fee Paying Student Visa or Pathway Student Visa, you do not need to have a medical examination, no matter how long you are staying in New Zealand, unless:

  • you have used intravenous drugs
  • you have had a blood transfusion
  • you have participated in or been exposed to any activity which may have exposed you to a serious infectious disease, such as HIV, or Hepatitis B or C
  • we ask you to have one.

You had a medical examination for an earlier visa application

Even if you had a medical examination with an earlier visa application, you need to have another medical examination if:

  • it has been more than 3 years since you had the last one
  • your standard of health was not assessed as acceptable at the time
  • we need a different kind of medical certificate from the one you provided.

You are a woman over 45

If you are a woman over 45 you may need to have a physical breast examination. Your physician will tell you if you need one.

Evidence of your medical examination

When you have had your medical examination, you need to provide us with evidence you have done so.

You can do this by providing us with an eMedical reference number, or a medical certificate if you are in a country that does not have a panel physician.

Evidence of your good health

Getting an x-ray or medical examination