Traveling With Medication Takes Preparation


Travel preparation can be a tedious process that requires careful consideration of every item being packed, especially, when medications are needed.

Travel preparation

can be a

tedious process that requires careful consideration of every item


packed, especially, when medications are needed. Each country has developed their own distinct guidelines

regarding the legal statu

s of medications, which makes




much more difficult task

for those with chronic or serious health conditions.

Many people who travel internationally

are unsure about what they

are permitted to bring with them, and where they can acquire their medication

once they reach their destination


If travelers violate another country’s rules, they

may face consequences that could present serious setbacks to their health or impose penalti

es that could lead to charge

s for drug trafficking. The CDC is encouraging individuals to be aware of these varying regulations prior to traveling


avoid such consequences. Clinicians can help by counseling patients who are planning vacations or other trips.

When packing, medications should be kept separated from oth

er products, and stored in

carry-on luggage,


that medications can be easily located, and accessed

. TSA has a specific list of medical supplies that they allow on the plane, so it is important to look at that beforehand. For example, TSA states that diabetes-related supplies, equipment, and medications are allowed

through checkpoint after they have been screened or inspected.

The CDC also recommends bringing a small surplus of medicines in case of delays, and to make sure the containers have their original labels. Travelers should have a copy of all prescriptions in their possession



leave another copy at home with family or relative


. For controlled substances, such as marijuana, and injectable medicines, a note on letterhead stationary from the prescribing doctor should accompany.

A travel health medicine specialist or health care provider should be contacted to obtain


information. These individuals



discussions on how to adjust medication schedules when facing time zone changes and the best way to store medicines. Also, be sure to make an appointment, weeks in advance, to get

necessary vaccines.

There is a high likelihood that certain medications will not be accessible for purchase in a different country.

And if medicines

can be bought



destination, they may not meet the same

United States

quality standards.

In addition, counterfeit drugs are a major problem amongs

t many developing countries, according to the CDC. Patients should stay

alert, and buy only medicines in original packaging, from a licensed pharmacy.

What the United States may consider common prescriptions, or available over-the-counter drugs, may be illegal somewhere else. Travelers should be

cognizant of the guidelines of

medications in

the country being


to prevent issues, and to ease the entire traveling process. They should c


with the foreign embassy of that

country and utilize the International Narcotics Control Board to verify that medicines are permittable.

During vacation and travel endeavors,

people may neglect

their usual

medical treatments

. It’s important to continue proper management of health issues while in a different country without letting

serious health conditions or chronic diseases get in the way of exciting, new experiences




Traveling Abroad with Medicine. CDC website. Updated July 2, 2018. Accessed July 6, 2018.

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