Travel: How To Apply For A US Medical Visa From Nigeria

Photo credit: netdoctor.co.uk

The US has some of the best medical expertise the world over. With numerous breakthroughs in medical procedures, dental and internal medicine, surgery and pharmaceuticals, there’s no wonder why it’s a prime top-notch destination for Nigerian international patients.

According to a May 2008 McKinsey and Co. report, about 60,000 and 85,000 medical tourists traveled to the United States for the purpose of receiving in-patient medical care. The availability of advanced medical technology, Government and private sector investment in healthcare infrastructure, sophisticated training and accreditation of physicians, fast medical service and clinical excellence are some of the motivators for growth in foreigners traveling to the US for medical care. Several medical centers and teaching hospitals offer international patients quality assurance care centers, service coordinators, medical care, accommodations, finances and transportation that cater to foreigners who seek medical treatment in the US.

The US B-2 medical visa is applicable to outbound patients travelling to the US for the sole purpose of a doctor’s consultation, surgery, fertility treatments, cancer, weight loss, pre/post natal care, cardiovascular and orthopedic care, etc. You must establish that the treatment required is unavailable in Nigeria, but probably available in the US before travelling.

If you wish to travel to the US for medical care, you must provide a convincing assessment to the consular officer via social and economic ties that you’ll return to Nigeria after your treatment. Note that patients with contagious diseases may not be granted medical visas. If you wish to accompany a relative as a care giver or a donor, you must submit medical documentation and make the necessary visa application.

US Medical Visa Application Requirements

The necessary supporting documents required for the US B-2 medical visa application in order to establish your eligibility is as follows:

  • A valid international passport for travel to the United States with at least six months travels duration beyond your intended stay duration. In order to get your passport, visit an immigration office in your state, you can read up on that here
  • A Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application Form, DS-160 filled online along with a barcoded confirmation page for this form. Visa applicants must answer all questions completely, digitally sign the DS-160 form and then submit, print out a confirmation page for your visa interview. For the DS-160 and instructions for completing it, click here. For our detailed travel lounge guide on the DS-160 form click here.
  • One recent colour passport photograph (5 CM x 5 CM, white background only), one uploaded online with your DS-160 form and another brought to your visa interview. Click on This page for passport guidelines.
  • A receipt showing payment of your $160 (N53, 600) non-refundable non-immigrant visa application processing fee paid in Naira at GTbank. Click here to verify.
  • After a visa is issued, you may be required to pay an additional visa issuance reciprocity fee, depending on your nationality. Click here to find out if you must pay the visa issuance reciprocity fee and what the fee amount is.
  • Original financial evidence from your bank indicating your ability or your sponsor’s ability to pay for travel expenses, medical care bills, procedure costs, hospital accommodation costs, and other leisure activities. This can be indicated with one year bank statements indicating influx and outflow of cash through valid legal means to the account.
  • A properly addressed original referral letter on letterhead paper, with complete contact details, duly stamped and signed from a local accredited hospital or medical institute after the patients’ preliminary examination stating the initial diagnosis of the nature of the patients’ illness and the reason for referring the patient for medical treatment to the accredited medical Institute or hospital in the US.
  • A hospital admission letter on letterhead paper duly stamped and signed with complete contact details, from the hospital or physician in the US expressing willingness to treat this illness, specifying the nature of the medical treatment to be undertaken along with the treatment itinerary, costs of treatment, doctors fees and all medical related expenses.
  • An official statement of financial responsibility from the applicant or individuals stating the ability to afford all medical and living expenses in the US for the duration of the medical treatment. In the case of sponsorship, an affidavit form I 134 Affidavit of Support undertaken by a close relative sponsor or a notarized affidavit organization along with a copy of his/her government issued Identity Card or international passport should be attached.
  • Finally, an interview appointment letter confirming that you booked an appointment through the CGI appointment system via ustraveldocs or by calling its call center at 01-440-6218.

Other supporting documents required during your medical visa interview at the embassy or consulate should be brought along in a sealed envelope. Such supporting documents include;

  • Proof of travel history such as any document or previous visa stamps attesting to your previous visits to other countries.
  • Current proof of income, tax payments, property or business ownership, or assets and other documents demonstrating strong social and family ties to Nigeria that will compel you to return to your country after your intended visit to the U.S. ends.
  • Your travel itinerary such as flight/hospital/hotel bills and any other explanation about your planned trip.
  • A letter from your employer detailing your work/employment history such as position, salary, how long you have been employed, any authorized vacation, and the purpose of your U.S. trip.
  • Criminal/court records pertaining to any arrest or conviction anywhere, even if you completed your sentence or were later pardoned, i.e. police clearance certificate. Click here to find out how you can process one.
  • Supporting documents of your relationship to a sponsor if you will be financially sponsored by another person. Such documents include your birth certificate, the sponsor’s most recent original tax clearance forms and original bank statements or fixed deposit statements.

US Visa Application Process

Here are the basic steps to apply for your US B-2 medical visa:

  1. Pay your US medical visa application fee at a GT Bank branch or online if you have a GT Bank account and get your teller receipt and confirmation number. You will need the receipt number when scheduling your visa appointment.
  2. Complete your DS-160 application form online here, when you have finished the application, you should print the DS-160 application confirmation page and receipt number.  You will need the confirmation page on the day of your interview.
  3. Use the receipt number from the visa fee you paid to register for an appointment online on the CGI visa appointment website for the US Mission to Nigeria. Click ustraveldocs to book your appointment.  You can request an appointment in either Abuja or Lagos and where you would like to pick up your travel documents should you qualify for a visa.
  4. If extra documentation/passport submission is required from you, a 221(g) letter will be sent to you by the Embassy or Consulate General to submit for further processing, you should submit those documents to a VFS document collection office, which will in turn deliver your documents to the Embassy or Consulate General. There is no fee associated with this service.
  5. When your visa is approved, the VFS document collection office will hold your passport for pickup at the address that you specified when you scheduled your appointment. There are no extra fees associated with this service.
  6. Each applicant may schedule only one interview appointment.  If you would like another appointment date, you must cancel the original appointment and make a new one. You will have to cancel all previous appointments and make a new one.
  7. Visa applicants are fingerprinted using an ink-free digital scan by the U.S. Embassy/Consulate General as part of the visa interview.
  8. Visa applicants should appear at the consular gate on the date and time of their appointment.  Before the date of the appointment, applicants can reschedule up to two times for free.

For more additional information on US B-2 medical visa visit the websites below:

United States Diplomatic Mission to Nigeria

CGI Appointment Center

VFS Passport Submission Centre, Lagos
Manor House,
Plot 110, Admiral Ayinla Way,
Opposite Treasure Garden Estate,
Third Roundabout, Lekki Phase I
Lagos

VFS Passport Submission Centre, Lagos
16, Billings Way
Oregun Industrial Area
Ikeja,
Lagos

VFS Passport Submission Centre, Abuja
62, Lobito Crescent,
Wuse 2,
Abuja

United State Embassy Address
Abuja
Embassy of the United States of America
Plot 1075 Diplomatic Drive
Central District Area, Abuja, Nigeria
Telephone: +234 9 461 4000

United State Consulate Address
Lagos
Consular Section,
2, Walter Carrington Crescent,
Victoria Island,
Lagos
Telephone: +234 1 460 3400

Office Hours: Mondays – Fridays, 07:30 AM – 16:00 PM, offices are closed on Nigerian and American public holidays.

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