We've been looking into internation adoption and I'm concerned about the medical exam/dr's letter. What exactly does that entail? The thing that worries me is that a few months ago my Dr convined me to go on Lexapro for mild anxiety. She really pushed for me to just try it, no big deal, etc so I did but I didn't like the side effects so I only took it for a couple months. She also put in my chart "Generalized Anxiety Disorder". Great. I feel like that just screwed me when it comes to IA.
So, is it just a generic letter that the doctor has to write "so and so has a normal life expectancy, etc." or do they have to list everything you have been diagnosed with?
Does it matter what type of doctor does the exam? I was thinking, maybe I could get my OB/GYN to do the letter? He is the one who manages my blood pressure so I have seen him a few times in the last two years. He has nothing in his record of anxiety.
Thanks for any help.
These vary by country and change over time. For Bulgaria, it was very general. I would assume most countries would have to do blood tests for Aids.
Once you have chosen a country, talk to your doctor about this and she what she says. Also, talk to your agency and see if it is a big geal. The idea of having your OB/GYN do it could be a good back up.
Based upon the tests and examinations I have performed on ŅŅ[name], my conclusions are that he/she is in excellent health.
ŅŅŅ. [name] has a normal life expectancy is in a good physical and psychological health.
....... [name] does not suffer of any grave chronic conditions or contagious venereal diseases, Hepatitis, AIDS, tuberculosis, and other life threatening diseases.
I am convinced that ŅŅŅ. [name would make an excellent adoptive parent. and I believe that he/she is capable of raising and loving a child. I am convinced that ............ [name] will cope with the adoption in the most reliable way.
Our was for China and we had to go in for a routine physical and then had to have a blood work up. They tested for Heb. B, AIDS etc. The doc had to do a checklist of medical conditions like sergeries, tumors, etc. He also had to list any medications or medical conditions the doctor was monitoring. I know in our packet it said if there was a medical condition, the doc would have to write a letter stating the nature of it and that the applicant was still ok to adopt.
I know I thought that I should have had my OB do mine, since we had just switched family docs and I had never been to this one before.
You will usually require two medical reports, one for your homestudy and one for your dossier. You can see the doctor once, but he/she will need to complete two forms.
As far as the form for your homestudy, the content will be mandated by your state and your homestudy agency's policy. There will probably be some checkoff boxes, plus an area for the doctor to indicate whether you are likely to have a normal lifespan and he/she sees any other barriers to adoption. Very few homestudy agencies will have a problem with treatment for anxiety or depression, as long as there is no history of suicide attempts or inpatient therapy. Most social workers would rather see a person get help than go through life anxious and depressed, and feel strongly that therapy or medication can make a person a BETTER parent.
Each foreign country has its own medical form and its own requirements. With some countries, the medical form is very basic. There will be some required medical tests -- for example, an HIV test or a TB test. There will be some checkoff boxes for conditions like cancer. There may be some questions about substance abuse. And there may be a place where the doctor indicates whether you are fit enough to meet the challenges of parenthood and are likely to have a normal lifespan.
Other countries are more strict, and want more tests and more statements about whether or not you have had certain medical conditions. China has become quite strict lately. It is concerned not only about the usual issues, but about obesity, medication for anxiety or depression, etc.
Your best bet is to do some research about the medical requirements of any country from which you might want to adopt. There may be some countries that simply won't accept you, even though you are healthy and likely to have a normal lifespan. On the other hand, there are probably plenty that will.
For Bulgaria did you have to have your doctor's exam notarized? We do, and our doctor's office doesn't have a notary on staff. Just wondering if we have to have it notarized while we are physically in the doctor's office, or if it can be after we leave the office?
I was a wreck about the doc notorization part! From what I was told a notorary had to witness the docs sig. So, what we did was have our doc write a prescription giving our social worker permission to notorize it and that way she could compair the signatures. Some have said you can find a traveling notary however I had no idea where to find one!
Nowadays, many doctors' offices have notaries on staff, because of all the paperwork they have to do. The notary may, for example, be the person who handles billing. But if yours does not, here are some alternatives:
1. Is your doctor's office in a large building with other doctors' offices? Ask around. One of the offices is bound to have a notary. Your doctor can call the other doctor and see if he/she will let his/her notary come up to witness your documents. Especially if adoption is mentioned, the answer will almost always be yes.
2. Is your doctor's office in an office building with offices that are not medical? Notaries are often found in law offices, title companies, insurance companies, real estate firms, and other businesses that deal with a lot of paperwork. So check around. The notary may well be willing to pop over to the doctor's office at lunchtime to notarize the documents.
3. Most doctors have hospital privileges and make rounds at one or more hospitals daily, seeing their patients. Virtually all hospitals have a notary on staff, often in the billing or finance office. Find out which hospital(s) your doctor visits routinely. Then check with the hospital -- call administration or the finance office -- to find out who the notary is and what his/her hours are. The doctor may be willing to carry the paperwork with him/her when he/she goes to the hospital, and to notarize it there.
4. If you have used your doctor for years, and he/she is a caring person who is very supportive of your adoption, he/she may be willing to take your paperwork to be notarized by someone he/she knows, either after work or on his/her lunch break.
5. Traveling notaries are expensive, but a reasonable "last resort". Look in your phone book under notaries. If your phone book does not have such a listing, you can ask a notary in a place like Mailboxes, Etc. if he/she ever travels to notarize, though the answer may be no. You can also call a mortgage company or realtor and ask if the employees ever use a traveling notary to do closings. I once used an out of state mortgage company that sent a traveling notary to my home for a closing.
6. I'm told that some states permit a notary to verify that something is a "true copy", and that this MAY be acceptable to your adoption agency. In other words, what the notary is verifying is not that the doctor wrote the report, but that you have made a legitimate copy of the report. For this purpose, he/she witnesses YOUR signature. Be very careful about going this route, and use it only if your adoption agency says it is acceptable and if your state allows it.
Although we did end up using a family doctor, we had considered just having my OB/GYN do the reports for us since he totally loves me and would have been happy to help out. Plus, with all of our initial infertility testing, he had done HIV, Chlamydia, Syphillis, etc. testing so we thought it would have been only natural and much easier.
However, we decided to play it safe as we're adopting from Russia and they are very strict. We just used our (also like PP, brand new) family Dr. and just gave him copies of the lab reports from my OB/GYN and RE. Can't you just switch family doctors??? That's what I would do!!
Best of luck!!!
Oh, and about the notaries for everything...the psychiatrist, the CPA, and the Family doc...I was really nervous too!! Our Family Doc was AMAZING!!! He was like, "no big deal" and just brought it to his bank with him! The psychiatrist tried to do it in the hospital during rounds but the notary was off that day so the next day he hired a traveling notary to come to his office (yes, much more expensive, but it had to be done). And, it was nice that they handled that...saved us the hassle!! Our CPA handled all of the notarizing herself as she knows someone who is a notary. :) Everyone was very excited about our adoptions and eager to help out. :)
We did not have to do a medical exam for our home study, so not all state's or countries require this. I had my ob/gyn do my paperwork at my annual visit. His office has a lab and a notary, so it was all easily done in house. The medical report for our agency was just a fill in the blank that this "patient is healthy and able to parent an adopted child." They had us do bloodwork for HIV, Hep ABC, TB and other stuff.
As far as a traveling notary, ask everyone you know about a notary. You will be amazed at who is a notary and who is willing to help. My husband's dr. does not have a notary, but my husband's boss's secretary is a notary and was willing to go to the dr. office and notarize the medical report. It is also very helpful when you get your documents certified to have used as few notary publics as possible.
just waiting on our USCIS approval for our baby boy from Kyrgyzstan
Did anyone in this thread who is adopting from Bulgaria have trouble getting your doctor to sign your medical form?
Our doctor is unwilling to sign the form because we have not seen the "respective specialists" mentioned on the form.
Did anyone in this thread who is adopting from Bulgaria have trouble getting your doctor to sign your medical form?
Our doctor is unwilling to sign the form because we have not seen the "respective specialists" mentioned on the form.