There are certain health testing and vaccination requirements for Ukrainians who wish to be beneficiaries through the Uniting for Ukraine program. Some of these requirements must be completed before the beneficiary is approved to travel, while other requirements must be completed after the beneficiary is paroled into the United States.
Ukrainians who are applying for the Uniting for Ukraine program are required to confirm that they have been vaccinated against measles, polio, and COVID-19. Beneficiaries who are not previously vaccinated against measles, polio, and at least one dose of the COVID-19 will need to receive those vaccines before they are allowed to travel. Once they get and/or confirm those vaccines, they will need to inform USCIS that they been vaccinated by submitting a pre-travel “attestation” through their USCIS accounts.
After the beneficiary completes the application approval, vaccine attestation, and vetting process, CBP will process their requests for travel authorizations. Beneficiaries should also check for new/other travel requirements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that are not specific to Uniting for Ukraine, including pre-departure testing for COVID-19. In addition, they should check with the airline they plan to use to see if there are extra requirements for passengers.
Once they are paroled into the United States, Uniting for Ukraine beneficiaries will need to complete a second medical attestation in their USCIS accounts within 90 days of arrival. In the post-arrival attestation, beneficiaries must state that they will get tested for Tuberculosis (TB) and receive the second (or remaining) dose of the initial COVID-19 vaccine (if they only received one dose before arrival).
Covid-19 vaccines are free, effective, and safe to use. While Covid-vaccines do not prevent people from getting the Covid-19 virus or illness, they do help protect people from severe symptoms and hospitalization for Covid-19. This includes “booster” shots that are designed to help protect against the newer Covid-19variants. Although Covid-19 boosters are not required, they are widely available, free, and recommended for certain adults and children. To learn where to get Covid-19 vaccines or boosters, visit the CDC Vaccine website.
Ukrainian new arrivals should arrange for their own Covid-19 vaccinations and medical screening for tuberculosis, but many local or state health departments may be able to provide a TB blood test or refer them to other testing locations. New arrivals may also be able to get a TB blood test at a health care provider’s office or a local laboratory. Also, the Razom Ukrainian Response Initiative offers newly arrived Ukrainians in New York City free testing and vaccinations.
All adults and children at least 2 years old must be screened for TB by getting an interferon-gamma release assay (IGRA) test within 90 days after arrival to the United States. An IGRA is a blood test to tell if a person has been infected with the TB bacteria. For the TB blood test, a healthcare provider or laboratory technician will draw blood and send it to a laboratory for analysis and results. Only one visit is needed to draw blood for the test, but results can take up to 4 weeks. It is important to know that the IGRA test does not tell whether the person has a latent TB infection or has progressed to TB disease. The test only indicates whether or not the person has been infected with the TB bacteria.
Those who have a positive reaction to the TB blood test must get additional testing. The doctor or nurse will perform other tests and may recommend treatment, which may include a chest radiograph, isolation, and TB treatment.
Children under 2 years old who qualify for an exception to the tuberculosis test screening don’t need to get the screening, but they still need to complete the medical attestation within 90 days of arrival. Beneficiaries who test positive for tuberculosis must take the appropriate measures, including additional
Here is a preview of the health attestation page:
Certain Ukrainian parolees may be eligible for benefits through the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) or through other federally funded benefit programs. Additional details are available on the ORR website. Coverage of the initial TB screening and blood test will depend on when you apply for benefits or health insurance, whether the state offers retroactive coverage, and if the healthcare provider can bill your health insurance. TB screening may be available for free or at a reduced cost at local and state health departments.
For more information on Covid-19 facts, testing, and vaccination for Ukrainians, visit https://nrcrim.org/ukrainians/covid-19-resources-ukrainian-new-arrivals.
For more information on Tuberculosis (TB) and testing requirements for Ukrainians, visit https://www.cdc.gov/tb/programs/unitingforukraine.htm.