Health check for English teachers /HIV test/

Hi guys,

Is HIV test required as a part of health check for those who want to teach English in Vietnam?
There are mixed information there and I would be grateful to hear from someone who recently had to do a health check or from knowledgable person.

Thank a lot

Can't help you with the law, hopefully others can, but the cost of ART, if you're on it, will be unaffordable.

The law in VN is not uniform. Most places wont check, but one place might.  None of my friends have had a HIV test, so you should be ok.

Assuming from your question that you are HIV positive, are you prepared to pay the full cost of anti-viral medications while living in Vietnam?  I may not understand how it works but will NHS give you a years medication up front?

I would travel back to the UK every half a year to get the medications. Another alternative would be travel to Thailand. I spoke to my doctor and she said she had patients who work in Japan and they are in the UK every 6 months.

My only concern is the health check in Vietnam. I am qualified English teacher with master degree in Language Teaching, CELTA, qualified teacher status and a few years of experience teaching English in the UK /London/.

jonmills973 :

I would travel back to the UK every half a year to get the medications. Another alternative would be travel to Thailand. I spoke to my doctor and she said she had patients who work in Japan and they are in the UK every 6 months. 
My only concern is the health check in Vietnam. I am qualified English teacher with master degree in Language Teaching, CELTA, qualified teacher status and a few years of experience teaching English in the UK /London/.

I am not sure that you can buy anything in Thailand that you can''t buy in Vietnam but if the UK will give you 6 months at a time without cost, that's good.  The plane ticket will probably be less than the cost of the drugs, even in Vietnam or Thailand

This query comes up with some regularity.  While some have stated that they were not tested, I do not recall anyone stating that 1) they were HIV positive, 2) they were tested, and 3) they were granted a work permit, which is a different thing than not being tested.  That does not mean that it is logically, or legally, impossible.  It just means that nobody has stated as much.   Also as Colinoscapee has correctly stated there may be differences from province to province or even between hospitals.

Also note that if the exam includes an HIV test, you may not be notified as such until you see the results.  I know there was no permission for the test included in my physical, but I was tested.  There may have been a blanket permission statement but not an explicit permission to test for HIV.  It should be clear that your rights in Vietnam may not be the same as they are in England.

If you do a simple site search for "HIV" you will see how many times this has come up.  After you get your first results, you can narrow the time frame through an option near the top of the page.

Given your qualifications, I certainly hope you succeed in your quest.

jonmills973 :

I would travel back to the UK every half a year to get the medications. Another alternative would be travel to Thailand. I spoke to my doctor and she said she had patients who work in Japan and they are in the UK every 6 months.

My only concern is the health check in Vietnam. I am qualified English teacher with master degree in Language Teaching, CELTA, qualified teacher status and a few years of experience teaching English in the UK /London/.

I’d tread carefully with your nurse/specialist and I hope you have a good relationship with whoever you see for your prescription. Technically, you’re meant to be deregistered if out of the country for more than 3 months. I too take life long medication, its not for HIV but I believe HIV patients also take it. Tenofovir disoproxil. My nurse has a heart of gold and when I told her of my plans to go travelling for a long time, she began helping me stockpile medicine. They’re not suppose to give more than 6 months supply some will only give you 3. My nurse booked me in for more appointments specifically to stockpile a years supply of these drugs.

I also have a liver specialist dr friend who can prescribe it for me in Hanoi. I think he said its about 90 USD a months supply. This was an emergency back up plan. Always have a back up plan to get your meds. There’s fake stuff going around.

Thanks Phikachu for your reply.
I am not worried about the pills, I can take 6 months stock and then travel back to the UK to get some more. I spent half a year away from the UK and I was given the stock for that period of time.  My only concern is the medical check up. Some articles say that it is mandatory to be tested for HIV the others say something different. I would not like to be deported from Vietnam if they did the test secretly without my knowledge.

jonmills973 :

Thanks Phikachu for your reply.
I am not worried about the pills, I can take 6 months stock and then travel back to the UK to get some more. I spent half a year away from the UK and I was given the stock for that period of time.  My only concern is the medical check up. Some articles say that it is mandatory to be tested for HIV the others say something different. I would not like to be deported from Vietnam if they did the test secretly without my knowledge.

I've done two health checks, neither of them included a HIV test.

As long as you can afford the time and travel costs, why not simply come to Vietnam, find a job and take the physical.  The worst case scenario is that you will be denied the work permit and have to give up your employment, not that you will be deported.  If that happens, you can just call it an extended vacation.

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