HIV test instructions

An HIV test is required for all student visas to Russia. The Russian consulate is very strict about the format and content of the HIV test and so we ask that you confirm that all the following is true before you mark your HIV test upload task as "done". We suggest that you bring this list of requirements to the clinic and emphasize that your test results must follow this format.

1. The test must be dated no more than 3 months prior to your visa application date. To be safe, schedule the test for 1.5-2 months prior to your program start date. If you will be traveling or have other complications, contact us about timing.

2. It must be a blood/serum test and state that clearly, in layman terms, on the test results. Literally the word blood or serum must appear on the document.

3. The following information must also appear on the test results:

- Clinic or lab name, address, telephone

- Name AND SIGNATURE of doctor or lab tech

- Your name

- Date of test

- Test results

Quite often the standard lab result templates do not have all of this, nor can the lab easily inject it. In that case, please request a supplementary letter, on clinic letterhead, that DOES include all of the above.

If you have questions about any of these requirements, contact us.

A few location-specific medical notes below (unless you are studying in one of these locations, this does not apply to you):

  • For students studying at MGIMO: as part of your visa registration when you arrive you will need to present a copy of your HIV test (issued within 6 months of the arrival date), as well as medical certificates (lab results) for syphilis and hepatitis A, B and C (all issued within 3 months of the arrival date). It is possible to arrange taking the syphilis/hepatitis tests in Moscow after your arrival (in fact, all of these tests can be taken for approximately $30 in Moscow), but since you'll have blood drawn for the HIV test anyway we recommend asking your clinic to test for syphilis, hepatitis A, B, and C at the same time, and bringing those lab results with you to Moscow. In addition, you will need to bring the following when you arrive at MGIMO:
    • international certificates of vaccinations or an original medical report on vaccinations against tetanus, measles, diphtheria;
  • For students studying at Higher School of Economics (in Moscow): If you are staying in the dorms you will need to have your doctor complete this form. It should be on their official letterhead so we would recommend pasting this into a Word doc for them to work with. (
  • For students studying in Irkutsk or Vladivostok: if you are staying in the dorms, you will be required to get a lung x-ray for tuberculosis after arrival. Clinics in the US usually insist on doing a skin TB test, which won't be accepted by the university. It's much easier if you just plan to get the x-ray after your arrival, and our local coordinator will give you further instructions on where to do so once you arrive.