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Getting A Chinese Health Certificate For Residency Permit While Hepatitis B Positive

A question from a reader who is a chronic carrier of Hepatitis B who is wondering if he will fail his mandatory health exam and be denied a Chinese residence permit because of it.

The following is a question from a reader who is a chronic carrier of Hepatitis B who is wondering if he will fail his mandatory health exam and be denied a Chinese residence permit because of it.

Hi,
I found your articles very helpful, can you please help me to know , if someone has hepatitis B then can he get the working visa or resident permit or he will be definitely deported or refused?

Few things in China are ever completely straight forward and it is very rare for rules and regulations to be implemented, interpreted, and followed in every municipality in exactly the same way, so take my response to your question as one of many voices on this issue.

While you will be tested for Hep B (along with HIV and Syphilis) during the medical exam for your residence permit, the chances of being denied a health certificate on grounds of a positive result alone is slight. There are over 130 million carriers of Hep B in China, which is a third of all the cases in the world and covers 10% of the Chinese population — and 30 million of these are chronically infected. So saying that this disease is epidemic in this country would be an understatement — it’s totally common. So in this climate the chances of a foreigner being booted out simply for showing Hep B antibodies would be extreme.

Now, if you’re a chronic carrier of Hep B and it’s severely adversely affecting your liver function there is a reasonable chance that your certificate will be denied, as you would then be seen as a national health liability, the same as if you had severe heart problems. If this happens, it is my opinion that you will just be denied the residency permit and would have to leave the country within a specified amount of time, and will more than likely not be quarantined or formally deported.

Again, this is just general advice based on my research and experience, and there is always a chance that your case may be handled differently.

If anyone else has additional advice on this matter, please comment below.

Filed under: China, Health, Visas

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3544 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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  • Craig D Viscardi September 8, 2019, 12:11 am

    My spouse is in the exact same situation. Any updates to this info since 2013?

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