Tips for traveling with medication and growth hormone
If you´re planning a trip, but you or your child need daily medication, what do you do? Growth hormone in particular brings a lot of questions, as many wonder about the legality and ease of traveling with injections. It’s absolutely possible to travel with prescription medication, but there are a few guidelines to follow for smooth sailing.
Flying with medication – Getting prepared
Before you leave, it’s a good idea to prepare your medication ahead of time. For over-the-counter drugs, you´ll be safe packing them in your carry-on for easy access on the flight. Growth hormone and other prescription medication require a bit more preparation.
How many days will you be gone? Plan for the amount of doses you´ll need, and add one or two in case of travel issues. For growth hormone pens, calculate your daily dose, multiply it be the total travel days, and pack pens that contain enough milligrams. A good idea is to start a new pen ahead of time, use it until the number of doses you need for travel remain, and pack that pen away. Then, you can just get rid of it on your last day of vacation and avoid packing it for home.
Overall, plan to keep your medication in your carry-on, and follow all physician’s directions for travel. If it need to be refrigerated or stored, prepare a cooler ahead of time. Keeping medication on hand during travel avoids the problems of lost luggage, but prepare to talk to security at the airport.
TSA traveling with medication – At the airport
Bring your/your child’s prescription with you alongside medication. Prepare to ask the security staff to check your meds visually, rather than sliding it through the scanner. Make sure you avoid delays by pulling your medication out of your carry-on before security. For extra security, get a signed letter from your/your child’s doctor, stating the medical necessity of traveling with prescription medication such as growth hormone. Be sure to get a letter when traveling across country lines.
For more information, visit the TSA website for specific rules and regulations.
Traveling with medication internationally
It’s completely legal to travel with internationally with your prescription medication. To make the process easy, follow these tips to get across the border:
- Keep the medication in its original packaging for easy identification
- Get the prescription printed on the container
- Try to travel with no more than 90-days’ worth of medication
- Be sure to bring a signed doctor’s note alongside the prescription
- Always be honest when questioned about usage, place of purchase, or anything else by airport security. You are well-within your rights to seek growth hormone or other prescription outside of the country and return home.
- Finally, be respectful to airport security if any issues arise. But if you follow the above guidelines, you should be able to travel across the border without a problem.
Traveling with refrigerated medication
If your medication or growth hormone requires refrigeration, get everything ready well before you leave. First of all, double and triple check doctor´s instructions, as some growth hormone pens only require medication prior to first use. If you´ve confirmed refrigeration is necessary, pack a cooler.
Get a cooler and ice packs that are carry-on friendly. Keep your ice packs frozen, as if they melt, they´re considered a liquid. You can´t take more than 4 oz of liquid in a single package on the plane, so take special care to pack ice at the last minute and avoid hot temperatures.
If you´re staying in a hotel, request a room with a freezer if possible. Most regular hotel refrigerators won’t keep your ice packs frozen for traveling home. If no in-room freezers are available, ask the hotel staff if you can keep them in the kitchen, and they should be able to accommodate.
Traveling with prescription medication
When traveling with prescription medication, each situation will be different. Airport security staff are equipped to handle these situations, as tons of travelers bring their prescriptions daily. Be sure to bring the actual prescription, keep it in the original packaging, and add-on a doctor’s note for extra assurance.
Please note that any of the tips listed above are not medical advice, and you should always follow the direction of your doctor. Talk to your family physician if you have any concerns about the safety of traveling with medication, and consult the TSA website for security clarifications.