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Harley and hans

Medical Exam Experience in St. Lukes and some Advise

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Philippines
Timeline

Hello Everybody,

Just wanna share my medical experience just recently this May 29 (Thursday) and May 30, 2008 (Friday) at St. Lukes Medical Center Extension, Manila even though I still have a very painful arm from the vaccination I received yesterday. It is a two day medical examination. In this post, I’ll try to share my insights and tips as much as I can for those who are to go through this process in the future. Hopefully I will be able to help all your med exam much easier by giving these tips and story I’ll be sharing. The more prepared you are, the less mistake and confusion you make, and the more time and effort you save for yourself, the more “smarter you be”, the less stranger you become the whole time you are through it.

FIRST DAY OF THE 2-DAY MEDICAL EXAM

My mom and I arrived in St Lukes at 9:30 a.m. all the way from Olongapo City. The front Guard looked for my appointment letter.

PROCESS NUMBER 1: VERIFICATION OF THE USEM PACKET BY THE SLEC GUARDS (GROUND FLOOR)

I presented him the email confirmation sent by USEM indicating my interview schedule/appointment. He said this is not it. He told me to present the letter with USEM logo. He probably is looking for the packet 4 letter. I told him that I did not receive any packet 4 letter from USEM until now. I also told him that my fiance’ called the USEM and also read articles from the USEM website manila that USEM no longer sends packet 3 and packet 4 (and that we just downloaded pertinent direction from that website). I keep on convincing the guard about this thing. To make it more justified, I showed him the duplicate copy of Noa1, Noa2 and the email copy we received from NVC indicating our issued new case number (MNLxxxxxxx) wherein in that letter also it is indicated that our case has been forwarded to embassy. The guard said, “Yes this is it what I am looking for.” And I shook my head because I thought he was looking for Packet 3 or Packet 4. I also shook head cause all I know that the email appointment letter is itself the only one to be searched for. Thank God, I made extra careful and bring all these extra documents.

(Tip#1: It doesn’t hurt to be ready, than be sorry. In my case all I know is that appointment letter is enough, but then it pays off when I bring with me this NVC letter.) The guard stamped my hand with their stamper to identify me (it is necessary for them to give identifiable marks so that in case, you go outside the hospital and want to come back again just for easy identification). They then gave me the Patient Data Sheet Form (PDSF), and a working process flowchart for guidance in going through this entire 2 days medical exam.

They checked my passport. I found out I have not filled-up the reference or in case of emergency information back part of my passport. So I did it. Also the guard noticed that I don’t even have my signature on my passport (This only applies for those passport holder whose passport is not e-passport issued).

[b](Tip #2 – Make sure you put your signature legibly, you will be filling out several signatures along the way, and just to avoid confusion your signature must be consistent)[/b]

They didn’t let my mom accompany me inside the hospital. The guard said only the visa applicants with corresponding papers are allowed inside.

(Tip #3- So if you have someone accompanying you, either they stay all the whole time waiting for you in nearby fastfood or they go to whatever hotel you’ll be checking in while you are in medical. Its up to you. But I tell you, waiting outside is not that convenient. Nearby canteens aren’t air conditioned, very hot and it is open. Meaning smokes from vehicles passing by can be exhaled and your family/friends waiting outside will definitely end up more sweaty and feeling more tired than you who is inside St. Lukes. Just have some backup plan in case. Lol. : -)

PROCESS NUMBER 2: SUBMISSION OF ACCOMPLISHED PDS FORM AND DIGITAL PICTURE TAKING AND ENCODING OF DATA AT THE RECEPTION GROUND FLOOR AREA

Still on the reception ground floor area, I filled up the PDSF using black ballpen. (Tip #3 - in that form you need to staple one piece of your 2x2 picture but make sure you write your full name at the back of that photo before stapling it). After filling it up hand your PDSF to the receptionist/counter personnel and they will direct you to go the digital picture taking room.

(Tip #4 make sure before you hand over your PDSF you already retouched your face or makeup so that when you are directed on the photo room, you don’t take too much time and make other people waiting for you to get done). As of me, I didn’t retouched any longer. I am so messy, no doubt the photographer said,”you seemed like you really came from a very long travel.” (hehe very pangit, greesy face I have! lol)

Anyways, after your picture is taken they encode it on a computer. This photo encoding is to be placed on their computer database for St Luke’s security purposes. (I’ll tell you later). Asked the photographer who is also the encoder in that room, if he is already done. If he/she is done, go back to reception/counter area. The receptionist will check all your PDSF form and will interview you such as ask you when was the first day of your last menstruation.

(Tip #5- don’t forget to note/recall your last menstruation, it will be asked along the 2 day medical exam).

PROCESS NUMBER 3: PAYMENT OF MEDICAL FEE AT THE CASHIER AT THE 5TH FLOOR

You have the option to get to other floor – either you use the elevator or the stairs. I have claustrophobia and have elevator freight, so for 2 days it is the long stairway that I use.

[b](Tip #6 – better wear comfortable shoes or sandals as you will be needing to go back and forth to different floors. They have 5 floors in that building.)[/b]

Fall in line in the cashier at the 5th floor. Make sure you check their current medical fee posted at the pay window and prepare it in your hand while falling in line to avoid congesting in the pay window and allow fast flow of transaction.

(Tip #7- always consider the person next in line wherever you go, don’t be a cause of delay in any line you will be going to. Treat it the same way you want to earn your fast and early turn. Don’t cause traffic!)

They issue you a receipt and they attach it to your PDSF.

PROCESS NUMBER 4: X-RAY IN 3RD FLOOR

After paying I looked on the flowchart given to me by the guard and it says next process is Xray. So I went to 3rd floor. Hand your PDSF to the 3rd floor counter/reception personnel. She/he will ask you if you have recent x-ray experience and will also ask about your last first day menstruation.

(Tip #8- if you underwent xray 6 months prior to your medical exam, you will be exempted to take this, so better bring your xray film or record). You will be asked to wait for your name to be called.

Once your name is called, you must go to dressing room and undress (remove your bra, tshirt or your top). They provide gowns for each patient. (I find this very nice, not all hospitals provide gowns for every patient, they only have few pieces, but St Luke got it and they make sure every patient use new/fresh gown.). X-ray technicians really make sure your chest and your arms are properly placed and held tight. Very nice to capture accurate chest reading!

(Tip #9- tie your hair very very uptight on your head, make sure no hair fall below your shoulder. They will ask you to tie it up completely).

Once you are done put your used gown in disposing box/container. Don’t return it to where you got it. I then asked the technician what’s the next process. She told me I go to 5th floor and get my vital signs. (Hmm, in the flowchart it says, next is Laboratory, but I still followed the technician’s advise).

I am almost on my way to 5th floor and I go back to Xray room and saw my PDSF in the xray bed. (Oh my gosh, thank goodness I went back. I was thinking that the xray technicial will forward it to next section… thinking that they will not let PDSF filled by them to be handed to patient and that it will move automatically as my medical progresses. But not, so please don’t assume. Observe and if necessary ask questions.

This is my first time that I feel I almost made a stupid move. If I didn’t get back to xray room and I am on the 5th floor, I will be going back again, long walk in the stairway. Imagine what disaster it would make to me, waiting for my turn in 5th floor and missing my PDSF form.

(Tip #10 Before I proceed sharing my experience, I want to emphasize that you must be very observant of your surroundings and people from the time you get inside St. Lukes. You don’t want to get lost wandering what must be done, what’s next, what’s this and that. Even if you can ask other applicants, also it feels different when you can accomplish things at your own strategy, technique, “diskarte”, right? And aside from that, have common sense. It is a must. )

PROCESS NUMBER 5: VITAL SIGNS, HEIGHT AND WEIGHT MEASUREMENT AND EYE TEST IN 5TH FLOOR

Anways, back to my story. From 3rd floor, I went back again to 5th floor. OK I pause for awhile because I saw 2 counters facing me (Medical fee window is at my back). One counter is for USA applicants and the other one is for Canada/Australia applicants. Definitely you go to your respective counter (if you are heading USA, then go to US counter). Hand your PDSF with your passport to the counter, and wait for your name to be called.

I was first called for height and weight measurement. You’ll be asked to remove your shoes, and any items that may add up to your weight such as your wristwatch, wallet, etc. After that, the attending nurse, will return your passport and PDSF to you. Once they returned it, go back to counter and give it back to them. Wait for your name to be called for Vital Signs (blood pressure checkup) or Eye Exam. After Vital Signs – go forward your papers to Counter, and then after eye exam – go to counter again, or vice versa.

(Tip #11: Every time you move from one place to another or one type of exam to another, always bring with you the passport and PDSF unless they directly tell you they will be the one to forward it to next exam part.)

(Tip #12 - the flowchart indicating the whole process of medical exam may not be as it is. St. Lukes follow triage system wherein they distribute or divide patients and direct them to different exam room in accordance to the volume of applicants that day with a purpose of not congesting certain medical exam room and allow them to attend to patients accordingly).

PROCESS NUMBER 6: IMMUNIZATION INTERVIEW AND TUBERCULIN SKIN EXAM IN 2ND FLOOR

I was then instructed to go to 2nd floor for the immunization interview. Hand your PDSF and passport to the 2nd floor receiving/counter personnel and wait for your name to be called. For the first day of medical exam, this is the part that would eat most of your time. You have to wait long because each applicant/patient are being interviewed and asked with series of questions.

(Tip #13- If you are still waiting come the time of 12 noon, you can go out the hospital and eat in nearby fastfood. Don’t worry that you will not be able to hear out your name. The counter will call the names of the person near to be called, usually 15 names every batch. When you get back from eating and you worry that you have been called but were out, you may check out your name or follow-up your name in the counter personnel 2nd floor. Don’t starve yourself ‘cause I tell you this is the longest time of all the exams. In my case, it was 11:50 am when I endorsed my papers to personnel, and my name wasn’t called until 4:00 pm. If you are really too nervous and don’t want to miss out your name, make sure you bring biscuits with you. But no other food is allowed inside.)

I made use of this waiting time to make friends with people. You may talk to people and ask about their visa, their process, or anything about the immigration papers itself. I learned that there are different applicants taking medical exam. There are immigrant applicants, K1, K3, etc. I was able to connect with people, and it helps to learn some enlightening stories from them. Just make sure when you talk to someone, they are in the mood to talking too.

Anyways, my turn has come at exactly 4pm. What a long wait! I was interviewed by one of the attending doctors. She asked about health related matters and what types of vaccination I already have.

(Tip #14 – Just like the xray exam, they also look to if you already have been vaccinated. If you are, bring all your supporting documents that you have -vaccine records. If you already have taken it, but do not have its corresponding document, just tell the doctor. She/he will be the one to decide if you still need to be revaccinated. )

Upon assessment, and they find you to have some problem, you will undergo Tuberculin Skin Exam. But if you are negative, they will directly tell you to go to proceed to 4th floor for Blood and Urine Exam.

PROCESS NUMBER 7: LABORATORY EXAM (BLOOD, URINE) 4TH FLOOR

I went back to 4th floor and proceeded to its counter. I was asked to sign my signature on a form relating to HIV /Aids. Also they encoded my name in their computer and the picture that was taken this morning (in the digital room) appeared in their computer. For St Luke security purposes to check if the applicant is really the one to be tested for HIV.

Anyways, no lines at this floor - We are only 2 applicants waiting for our turn to be called. To the laboratory, a vial of blood were taken for testing and then followed by urine exam. Just matter of less than 5 minutes for these 2 process.

PROCESS NUMBER 8: PHYSICAL EXAMINATION 5TH FLOOR

Immediately, after that, I went to US Counter in 5th floor and gave my papers (PDSF and passport) and they told me that next process is physical examination and that I just have to wait for my turn. They gave me number slip.

Inside the physical examination room, the attending doctor will interview you again about health related matters (just be patient, as some questions, mostly all are being asked from time to time from different rooms/floor).

(Tip #15 – Being honest pays off. You will be able to earn proper health advise as early as possible if you have other health concerns rather than having problems later on).

In the physical examination room, you need to completely undress/disrobe and lay down in bed to allow doctor to inspect/check your body for problems such as breast cancer, stomach problem, etc. If you are female, your attending doctor will be female also. So don’t worry. She will also check your butt, and will ask you to spread it and open it widely so she can check it. I think it has something to do to check if one has sexually transmitted disorder that can be quickly seen in genital area part such as the in legs, groin, etc… whatever you call that area. The physical exam only took for few minutes. After that I went to the US Counter and hand them again the papers, they checked it to make sure I have completed all requirements for the first day. Then after, they told me I am done for the day! Imagine, from 9:30 am, I Finally got done at 4:45pm … completely done for first day exam! She hand me back my passport and medical payment receipt. She told me to bring it back to the second day. I noticed that she put me for 2pm appointment.

SECOND DAY OF THE 2-DAY MEDICAL EXAM

I proceeded to St Lukes at 10:00 am. The guard said, I am too early for my appointment of 2pm. I told him, “it is ok, I am willing to wait. It is better be early and finish early.” He told me he will check my record first on their master list and make sure I have the second day appointment. Then ok, he told me to just proceed to second floor for immunization.

Second day, I approached the counter/receiving personnel and handed him the passport and my medical receipt. He refused to get it because he said I am too early for my appointment. I insisted that he take mine, telling him that I will just wait for my turn. He said, the doctor who interviewed me yesterday (immunization interviewer) is not yet around to give my result. I still decided to stay inside St. Luke’s.

While waiting, I asked people sitting beside me if they have an appointment for today. They said they do have appointment and I asked them what time. I realized that some of them (usually those who got their first day exam completely done in the morning) weren’t given time to go back. They don’t have notations in their receipts. And then I talked again to other people, hoping to find answers why I was given 2pm. And alas, there are some who has 10am, 11am notations written in their receipts.

After an hour and half, 11:30, I went back and talk again to the reception area. I guess I am too stubborn to do that.  But then, he refused me again. This time around, I asked him, that in the receipt handed to me, it is written that the result will be given at 2pm. So what is the difference, if I be immunized first? Then he responded that I will not be given immunization yet because my first day medical exam is not yet released. He said it is a pre-requisite before the immunization. That’s the answer I’ve been looking for the past hour. Finally, I understood it! I went to people who’ve I talked to and tell them what has been told to me. They were enlightened too.

(Tip #16- So basically, it is a learning experience for everyone when you ask and not just go on with the flow and assume things and perceive things in your head. Go ahead and ask and confirm to right authorities about any concerns you may have. )

At 12 noon, a reliever came in (new counter personnel to cover the one I spoke to while in lunch break) and I came to him and he accepted my receipt. And then he announced in the microphone that those who are waiting can go out and eat. Same thing as what I posted for the first day (if you are still stuck waiting while it is 12 noon or so).

I went out and eat and got back at 1pm. More people are coming by. They are those who have afternoon appointment. We were so congested in the area and everyone is saying that they were even there as early as 7am but their names were not called yet.

Many people approached the counter personnel and keep asking why their names weren’t called yet. The personnel explained that the second day medical exam is not on first come-first served basis. He also pointed out the directions showing that it a notice that it is not on first come first served basis. He said that the it will depend on the release of the first day medical exam per section and that it should be completely forwarded to them. Unless it is not complete, then you wait for long.

This immunization part, the waiting time to be called, eats out definitely most of your time.

[b](Tip #17- My learning experience, I realized that first day is first come first served basis. I should have had gotten my first day medical exam so that I could have had the results generated early next day. I realized that no matter how early you come to second day, it depends on the release result of your first day exam. Those who has gained positive findings (presence of pertinent findings), will not go through immunization, but rather they are subject to more laboratory testings and additional xrays and will have to show up for another day. )[/b]

Thank God, I am healthy, no health problem at all.

While waiting I get to talk to a lot of people and ended up accidentally talking to 2 of our VJ members here (djazz66 and philandbel) and the other 2 girls who I get to be close with also (not vj member). Now I earned new friends : )

Oh my gosh, my name was called up at 7:45pm. I received 2 vaccinations. But before that, they will ask you again some things about your health records etc. After that I went to ground floor to wait for the release of my vaccination record and xray film.

It is a good thing I already have 2 pieces of 2x2 pictures with me. It is a requirement before they release your vaccine record and xray film. They attach it with your PDSF form and passport to be submitted by them (St Lukes) directly to USEM.

(Tip #18 – bring pictures with you. There are photographers available outside and you can get your pictures taken express but then it is so expensive, you pay P120 pesos when you can just have it by P60 in your city/area. Also Xerox or photocopy your passport because St Lukes will get that from you. It is for your own reference)

My name was called up in the ground floor, and I was asked to verify the record placed on my immunization record such as bday, case number, etc. I was also asked when is the schedule of my interview. The releasing officer review everything and after that hand you your xray film and vaccine record. I asked him if these 2 documents will be brought to USEM interview and he said, no need. He said to bring the vaccine record to USA, just that. He also told me, that the PDSF and other results will be the reference of USEM.

Finally, I had my medical exam completed at 8:30 pm. Oh my gosh, from 10 am to 8:30 pm…. Finally done! Done! Done! Done!

There are still a lot of people waiting to be immunized and it is already almost 9pm. I am just so happy I am completely done.

(Tip #19 – better have a back-up plan in case you ended up waiting till late in the evening. For those who live in far away places, make sure you know the last bus trip and if you still can make it. If not, you’ll end up having to look at hotels nearby. So it is wise to plan everything, including emergency situations like this.)

I personally did not expect that I will be staying in St Lukes too long and not this late. I no longer have a hotel reservation for this day, and if we didn’t catch the Victory Liner, we surely end up in hotel again as unplanned. So better be prepared in situations like this. Always be ready at all times.

But we are glad we made it home, done from this very long and tedious medical exam. And Now, just waiting for my June 11 interview. :dance::luv:

Please pray for me.

P.S.

Last Tip - Tip #20

As much as possible, drink Vitamin C to boosten your immune system for a month prior to your interview. And lots of prayer for the medical exam.

:dance:


*********************************************************************************************

"Distance makes the heart grow fonder." Well, our heart have always and will continue to be quite fond of. Distance doesn't matter if you really love the person, what matters most is your honesty and trust for that relationship to work out. We may not get to see as often as we like, we may not get to hold each other in arms all through the night. But deep in our heart we truly know, we are meant for each other, the one to spend our life with forever!

Ryan and Dianne for keeps!

I-129F TIMELINE

11-10-2006...................first email

08-18-2007.............met in person

08-28-2007.....................departed

11-10-2007.....................engaged

12-13-2007......sent I-129F to CSC

12-18-2007...........................noa1

05-02-2008...........................noa2

05-19-2008..........................paid Delbros document verification

05-29-2008......................medical

06-11-2008....................interview

06-21-2008....................received the visa

07-04-2008....................last day at work (philippines)

07-08-2008....................cfo seminar

07-11-2008....................flight to USA

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Hungary
Timeline

Wow, this is probably one of the longest posts I have ever seen.

Thanks for the detailed advice.


Our Relationship

(09-27-06)Met in Hungary

(11-25-06)Fell in Love

(11-24-07)Met again in Hungary

(02-19-08)Met again in Hungary

K1 Visa Petition

(09-27-07)Preparing to send K1 Petition

(12-03-07)K1 Petition Sent US Postal Service

(12-11-07)Received NOA 1

(12-28-07)Touched

(03-11-08)Recieved NOA 2

(03-21-08)Recieved at NVC

(03-27-08)Sent from NVC

(04-02-08)Received Packet 3

(04-27-08)Medical Completed

(05-15-08)Received Packet 4

(05-29-08)Interview Date

(05-29-08)Visa given 40 mins after approval

(06-02-08)Arrival at the JFK and EAD given

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Hi,

thanks..this will really be a big help!!!!Godbless you..


'..because of u..i know now the meaning of LOVE..I see now the colors of LIFE..I can now SMILE...that is BECAUSE OF YOU....MY LOVE..."

CR 1 VISA TIMELINE:

Original Interview Date...................... .09/29/08

Medical @ St. Lukes.......................... 08/26-27/08

Sputum Test.................................... 09/01-03/08

AFB Culture Result............................. 10/31/08

Immunization................................ ... 11/03/08

Interview Date(Re-scheduled).......... .... 11/07/08(PINK SLIP..YAHOO!!!)

VISA Received.................................. 11/11/08(Thank U LORD!)

Flight Schedule................................. 11/21/08

Port of Entry.................................... Detroit,MI

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Hello Everybody,

Just wanna share my medical experience just recently this May 29 (Thursday) and May 30, 2008 (Friday) at St. Lukes Medical Center Extension, Manila even though I still have a very painful arm from the vaccination I received yesterday. It is a two day medical examination. In this post, I'll try to share my insights and tips as much as I can for those who are to go through this process in the future. Hopefully I will be able to help all your med exam much easier by giving these tips and story I'll be sharing. The more prepared you are, the less mistake and confusion you make, and the more time and effort you save for yourself, the more "smarter you be", the less stranger you become the whole time you are through it.

FIRST DAY OF THE 2-DAY MEDICAL EXAM

My mom and I arrived in St Lukes at 9:30 a.m. all the way from Olongapo City. The front Guard looked for my appointment letter.

PROCESS NUMBER 1: VERIFICATION OF THE USEM PACKET BY THE SLEC GUARDS (GROUND FLOOR)

I presented him the email confirmation sent by USEM indicating my interview schedule/appointment. He said this is not it. He told me to present the letter with USEM logo. He probably is looking for the packet 4 letter. I told him that I did not receive any packet 4 letter from USEM until now. I also told him that my fiance' called the USEM and also read articles from the USEM website manila that USEM no longer sends packet 3 and packet 4 (and that we just downloaded pertinent direction from that website). I keep on convincing the guard about this thing. To make it more justified, I showed him the duplicate copy of Noa1, Noa2 and the email copy we received from NVC indicating our issued new case number (MNLxxxxxxx) wherein in that letter also it is indicated that our case has been forwarded to embassy. The guard said, "Yes this is it what I am looking for." And I shook my head because I thought he was looking for Packet 3 or Packet 4. I also shook head cause all I know that the email appointment letter is itself the only one to be searched for. Thank God, I made extra careful and bring all these extra documents.

(Tip#1: It doesn't hurt to be ready, than be sorry. In my case all I know is that appointment letter is enough, but then it pays off when I bring with me this NVC letter.) The guard stamped my hand with their stamper to identify me (it is necessary for them to give identifiable marks so that in case, you go outside the hospital and want to come back again just for easy identification). They then gave me the Patient Data Sheet Form (PDSF), and a working process flowchart for guidance in going through this entire 2 days medical exam.

They checked my passport. I found out I have not filled-up the reference or in case of emergency information back part of my passport. So I did it. Also the guard noticed that I don't even have my signature on my passport (This only applies for those passport holder whose passport is not e-passport issued).

[b](Tip #2 – Make sure you put your signature legibly, you will be filling out several signatures along the way, and just to avoid confusion your signature must be consistent)[/b]

They didn't let my mom accompany me inside the hospital. The guard said only the visa applicants with corresponding papers are allowed inside.

(Tip #3- So if you have someone accompanying you, either they stay all the whole time waiting for you in nearby fastfood or they go to whatever hotel you'll be checking in while you are in medical. Its up to you. But I tell you, waiting outside is not that convenient. Nearby canteens aren't air conditioned, very hot and it is open. Meaning smokes from vehicles passing by can be exhaled and your family/friends waiting outside will definitely end up more sweaty and feeling more tired than you who is inside St. Lukes. Just have some backup plan in case. Lol. : -)

PROCESS NUMBER 2: SUBMISSION OF ACCOMPLISHED PDS FORM AND DIGITAL PICTURE TAKING AND ENCODING OF DATA AT THE RECEPTION GROUND FLOOR AREA

Still on the reception ground floor area, I filled up the PDSF using black ballpen. (Tip #3 - in that form you need to staple one piece of your 2x2 picture but make sure you write your full name at the back of that photo before stapling it). After filling it up hand your PDSF to the receptionist/counter personnel and they will direct you to go the digital picture taking room.

(Tip #4 make sure before you hand over your PDSF you already retouched your face or makeup so that when you are directed on the photo room, you don't take too much time and make other people waiting for you to get done). As of me, I didn't retouched any longer. I am so messy, no doubt the photographer said,"you seemed like you really came from a very long travel." (hehe very pangit, greesy face I have! lol)

Anyways, after your picture is taken they encode it on a computer. This photo encoding is to be placed on their computer database for St Luke's security purposes. (I'll tell you later). Asked the photographer who is also the encoder in that room, if he is already done. If he/she is done, go back to reception/counter area. The receptionist will check all your PDSF form and will interview you such as ask you when was the first day of your last menstruation.

(Tip #5- don't forget to note/recall your last menstruation, it will be asked along the 2 day medical exam).

PROCESS NUMBER 3: PAYMENT OF MEDICAL FEE AT THE CASHIER AT THE 5TH FLOOR

You have the option to get to other floor – either you use the elevator or the stairs. I have claustrophobia and have elevator freight, so for 2 days it is the long stairway that I use.

[b](Tip #6 – better wear comfortable shoes or sandals as you will be needing to go back and forth to different floors. They have 5 floors in that building.)[/b]

Fall in line in the cashier at the 5th floor. Make sure you check their current medical fee posted at the pay window and prepare it in your hand while falling in line to avoid congesting in the pay window and allow fast flow of transaction.

(Tip #7- always consider the person next in line wherever you go, don't be a cause of delay in any line you will be going to. Treat it the same way you want to earn your fast and early turn. Don't cause traffic!)

They issue you a receipt and they attach it to your PDSF.

PROCESS NUMBER 4: X-RAY IN 3RD FLOOR

After paying I looked on the flowchart given to me by the guard and it says next process is Xray. So I went to 3rd floor. Hand your PDSF to the 3rd floor counter/reception personnel. She/he will ask you if you have recent x-ray experience and will also ask about your last first day menstruation.

(Tip #8- if you underwent xray 6 months prior to your medical exam, you will be exempted to take this, so better bring your xray film or record). You will be asked to wait for your name to be called.

Once your name is called, you must go to dressing room and undress (remove your bra, tshirt or your top). They provide gowns for each patient. (I find this very nice, not all hospitals provide gowns for every patient, they only have few pieces, but St Luke got it and they make sure every patient use new/fresh gown.). X-ray technicians really make sure your chest and your arms are properly placed and held tight. Very nice to capture accurate chest reading!

(Tip #9- tie your hair very very uptight on your head, make sure no hair fall below your shoulder. They will ask you to tie it up completely).

Once you are done put your used gown in disposing box/container. Don't return it to where you got it. I then asked the technician what's the next process. She told me I go to 5th floor and get my vital signs. (Hmm, in the flowchart it says, next is Laboratory, but I still followed the technician's advise).

I am almost on my way to 5th floor and I go back to Xray room and saw my PDSF in the xray bed. (Oh my gosh, thank goodness I went back. I was thinking that the xray technicial will forward it to next section… thinking that they will not let PDSF filled by them to be handed to patient and that it will move automatically as my medical progresses. But not, so please don't assume. Observe and if necessary ask questions.

This is my first time that I feel I almost made a stupid move. If I didn't get back to xray room and I am on the 5th floor, I will be going back again, long walk in the stairway. Imagine what disaster it would make to me, waiting for my turn in 5th floor and missing my PDSF form.

(Tip #10 Before I proceed sharing my experience, I want to emphasize that you must be very observant of your surroundings and people from the time you get inside St. Lukes. You don't want to get lost wandering what must be done, what's next, what's this and that. Even if you can ask other applicants, also it feels different when you can accomplish things at your own strategy, technique, "diskarte", right? And aside from that, have common sense. It is a must. )

PROCESS NUMBER 5: VITAL SIGNS, HEIGHT AND WEIGHT MEASUREMENT AND EYE TEST IN 5TH FLOOR

Anways, back to my story. From 3rd floor, I went back again to 5th floor. OK I pause for awhile because I saw 2 counters facing me (Medical fee window is at my back). One counter is for USA applicants and the other one is for Canada/Australia applicants. Definitely you go to your respective counter (if you are heading USA, then go to US counter). Hand your PDSF with your passport to the counter, and wait for your name to be called.

I was first called for height and weight measurement. You'll be asked to remove your shoes, and any items that may add up to your weight such as your wristwatch, wallet, etc. After that, the attending nurse, will return your passport and PDSF to you. Once they returned it, go back to counter and give it back to them. Wait for your name to be called for Vital Signs (blood pressure checkup) or Eye Exam. After Vital Signs – go forward your papers to Counter, and then after eye exam – go to counter again, or vice versa.

(Tip #11: Every time you move from one place to another or one type of exam to another, always bring with you the passport and PDSF unless they directly tell you they will be the one to forward it to next exam part.)

(Tip #12 - the flowchart indicating the whole process of medical exam may not be as it is. St. Lukes follow triage system wherein they distribute or divide patients and direct them to different exam room in accordance to the volume of applicants that day with a purpose of not congesting certain medical exam room and allow them to attend to patients accordingly).

PROCESS NUMBER 6: IMMUNIZATION INTERVIEW AND TUBERCULIN SKIN EXAM IN 2ND FLOOR

I was then instructed to go to 2nd floor for the immunization interview. Hand your PDSF and passport to the 2nd floor receiving/counter personnel and wait for your name to be called. For the first day of medical exam, this is the part that would eat most of your time. You have to wait long because each applicant/patient are being interviewed and asked with series of questions.

(Tip #13- If you are still waiting come the time of 12 noon, you can go out the hospital and eat in nearby fastfood. Don't worry that you will not be able to hear out your name. The counter will call the names of the person near to be called, usually 15 names every batch. When you get back from eating and you worry that you have been called but were out, you may check out your name or follow-up your name in the counter personnel 2nd floor. Don't starve yourself 'cause I tell you this is the longest time of all the exams. In my case, it was 11:50 am when I endorsed my papers to personnel, and my name wasn't called until 4:00 pm. If you are really too nervous and don't want to miss out your name, make sure you bring biscuits with you. But no other food is allowed inside.)

I made use of this waiting time to make friends with people. You may talk to people and ask about their visa, their process, or anything about the immigration papers itself. I learned that there are different applicants taking medical exam. There are immigrant applicants, K1, K3, etc. I was able to connect with people, and it helps to learn some enlightening stories from them. Just make sure when you talk to someone, they are in the mood to talking too.

Anyways, my turn has come at exactly 4pm. What a long wait! I was interviewed by one of the attending doctors. She asked about health related matters and what types of vaccination I already have.

(Tip #14 – Just like the xray exam, they also look to if you already have been vaccinated. If you are, bring all your supporting documents that you have -vaccine records. If you already have taken it, but do not have its corresponding document, just tell the doctor. She/he will be the one to decide if you still need to be revaccinated. )

Upon assessment, and they find you to have some problem, you will undergo Tuberculin Skin Exam. But if you are negative, they will directly tell you to go to proceed to 4th floor for Blood and Urine Exam.

PROCESS NUMBER 7: LABORATORY EXAM (BLOOD, URINE) 4TH FLOOR

I went back to 4th floor and proceeded to its counter. I was asked to sign my signature on a form relating to HIV /Aids. Also they encoded my name in their computer and the picture that was taken this morning (in the digital room) appeared in their computer. For St Luke security purposes to check if the applicant is really the one to be tested for HIV.

Anyways, no lines at this floor - We are only 2 applicants waiting for our turn to be called. To the laboratory, a vial of blood were taken for testing and then followed by urine exam. Just matter of less than 5 minutes for these 2 process.

PROCESS NUMBER 8: PHYSICAL EXAMINATION 5TH FLOOR

Immediately, after that, I went to US Counter in 5th floor and gave my papers (PDSF and passport) and they told me that next process is physical examination and that I just have to wait for my turn. They gave me number slip.

Inside the physical examination room, the attending doctor will interview you again about health related matters (just be patient, as some questions, mostly all are being asked from time to time from different rooms/floor).

(Tip #15 – Being honest pays off. You will be able to earn proper health advise as early as possible if you have other health concerns rather than having problems later on).

In the physical examination room, you need to completely undress/disrobe and lay down in bed to allow doctor to inspect/check your body for problems such as breast cancer, stomach problem, etc. If you are female, your attending doctor will be female also. So don't worry. She will also check your butt, and will ask you to spread it and open it widely so she can check it. I think it has something to do to check if one has sexually transmitted disorder that can be quickly seen in genital area part such as the in legs, groin, etc… whatever you call that area. The physical exam only took for few minutes. After that I went to the US Counter and hand them again the papers, they checked it to make sure I have completed all requirements for the first day. Then after, they told me I am done for the day! Imagine, from 9:30 am, I Finally got done at 4:45pm … completely done for first day exam! She hand me back my passport and medical payment receipt. She told me to bring it back to the second day. I noticed that she put me for 2pm appointment.

SECOND DAY OF THE 2-DAY MEDICAL EXAM

I proceeded to St Lukes at 10:00 am. The guard said, I am too early for my appointment of 2pm. I told him, "it is ok, I am willing to wait. It is better be early and finish early." He told me he will check my record first on their master list and make sure I have the second day appointment. Then ok, he told me to just proceed to second floor for immunization.

Second day, I approached the counter/receiving personnel and handed him the passport and my medical receipt. He refused to get it because he said I am too early for my appointment. I insisted that he take mine, telling him that I will just wait for my turn. He said, the doctor who interviewed me yesterday (immunization interviewer) is not yet around to give my result. I still decided to stay inside St. Luke's.

While waiting, I asked people sitting beside me if they have an appointment for today. They said they do have appointment and I asked them what time. I realized that some of them (usually those who got their first day exam completely done in the morning) weren't given time to go back. They don't have notations in their receipts. And then I talked again to other people, hoping to find answers why I was given 2pm. And alas, there are some who has 10am, 11am notations written in their receipts.

After an hour and half, 11:30, I went back and talk again to the reception area. I guess I am too stubborn to do that.  But then, he refused me again. This time around, I asked him, that in the receipt handed to me, it is written that the result will be given at 2pm. So what is the difference, if I be immunized first? Then he responded that I will not be given immunization yet because my first day medical exam is not yet released. He said it is a pre-requisite before the immunization. That's the answer I've been looking for the past hour. Finally, I understood it! I went to people who've I talked to and tell them what has been told to me. They were enlightened too.

(Tip #16- So basically, it is a learning experience for everyone when you ask and not just go on with the flow and assume things and perceive things in your head. Go ahead and ask and confirm to right authorities about any concerns you may have. )

At 12 noon, a reliever came in (new counter personnel to cover the one I spoke to while in lunch break) and I came to him and he accepted my receipt. And then he announced in the microphone that those who are waiting can go out and eat. Same thing as what I posted for the first day (if you are still stuck waiting while it is 12 noon or so).

I went out and eat and got back at 1pm. More people are coming by. They are those who have afternoon appointment. We were so congested in the area and everyone is saying that they were even there as early as 7am but their names were not called yet.

Many people approached the counter personnel and keep asking why their names weren't called yet. The personnel explained that the second day medical exam is not on first come-first served basis. He also pointed out the directions showing that it a notice that it is not on first come first served basis. He said that the it will depend on the release of the first day medical exam per section and that it should be completely forwarded to them. Unless it is not complete, then you wait for long.

This immunization part, the waiting time to be called, eats out definitely most of your time.

[b](Tip #17- My learning experience, I realized that first day is first come first served basis. I should have had gotten my first day medical exam so that I could have had the results generated early next day. I realized that no matter how early you come to second day, it depends on the release result of your first day exam. Those who has gained positive findings (presence of pertinent findings), will not go through immunization, but rather they are subject to more laboratory testings and additional xrays and will have to show up for another day. )[/b]

Thank God, I am healthy, no health problem at all.

While waiting I get to talk to a lot of people and ended up accidentally talking to 2 of our VJ members here (djazz66 and philandbel) and the other 2 girls who I get to be close with also (not vj member). Now I earned new friends : )

Oh my gosh, my name was called up at 7:45pm. I received 2 vaccinations. But before that, they will ask you again some things about your health records etc. After that I went to ground floor to wait for the release of my vaccination record and xray film.

It is a good thing I already have 2 pieces of 2x2 pictures with me. It is a requirement before they release your vaccine record and xray film. They attach it with your PDSF form and passport to be submitted by them (St Lukes) directly to USEM.

(Tip #18 – bring pictures with you. There are photographers available outside and you can get your pictures taken express but then it is so expensive, you pay P120 pesos when you can just have it by P60 in your city/area. Also Xerox or photocopy your passport because St Lukes will get that from you. It is for your own reference)

My name was called up in the ground floor, and I was asked to verify the record placed on my immunization record such as bday, case number, etc. I was also asked when is the schedule of my interview. The releasing officer review everything and after that hand you your xray film and vaccine record. I asked him if these 2 documents will be brought to USEM interview and he said, no need. He said to bring the vaccine record to USA, just that. He also told me, that the PDSF and other results will be the reference of USEM.

Finally, I had my medical exam completed at 8:30 pm. Oh my gosh, from 10 am to 8:30 pm…. Finally done! Done! Done! Done!

There are still a lot of people waiting to be immunized and it is already almost 9pm. I am just so happy I am completely done.

(Tip #19 – better have a back-up plan in case you ended up waiting till late in the evening. For those who live in far away places, make sure you know the last bus trip and if you still can make it. If not, you'll end up having to look at hotels nearby. So it is wise to plan everything, including emergency situations like this.)

I personally did not expect that I will be staying in St Lukes too long and not this late. I no longer have a hotel reservation for this day, and if we didn't catch the Victory Liner, we surely end up in hotel again as unplanned. So better be prepared in situations like this. Always be ready at all times.

But we are glad we made it home, done from this very long and tedious medical exam. And Now, just waiting for my June 11 interview. :dance::luv:

Please pray for me.

P.S.

Last Tip - Tip #20

As much as possible, drink Vitamin C to boosten your immune system for a month prior to your interview. And lots of prayer for the medical exam.

:dance:

Hi Dianne.i see ur from Olongapo City like u said.Im from Olongapo too near Magsaysay close to JLGMH and Columban College.Where u live here in Olongapo???

Btw.congrats for passing ur medical and thanks for the tips.I didn't call yet for interview/medical.I already had the letter from the USEM.

Keep in touch and nice to meet you here.

Dawn


N-400 Naturalization

04/25/2012 - sent N-400 package to USCIS Dallas

04/28/2012 - package delivered at USCIS Dallas

I-751 Removal of Condition

03/22/2011 - sent I-751 package to USCIS Vermont via USPS Priority+Certified mail with Return receipt

03/24/2011 - package delivered at VSC according to USPS tracking

03/25/2011 - package received by Center Director according to Return receipt

04/04/2011 - NOA received - dated 03/25/2011

04/11/2011 - Biometrics Appointment Notice received -notice date 04/08/2011

04/28/2011 - Biometrics Appointment - Done!

10/14/2011 - Card Production Email

10/17/2011 - Approval Notice received - dated 10/06/2011

11/04/2011 - 10yrs green card received

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