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Packing your prescription pills is necessary for every trip. For me, however, it is critical. If I don’t have my meds then my function seriously decreases and my entire trip could be ruined. Therefore I have worked on a system to make sure I never leave home without them (and an extra set as well).
This first suggestion seems pretty obvious but my Mom who is a physician tells me that I would be surprised at the number of people who call their office at the last minute. Make sure you have enough pills to last your entire trip. Don’t call your doctor’s office the morning you are leaving with a panic message- “I’m leaving town today and need a refill right now.” Trust me, you won’t be popular at the doctor’s office and you may not be able to get a refill. I have learned to count my pills a full week ahead of a trip. If you don’t have enough and your refill is not due you can often get a “vacation override” from the drug store. But this won’t happen if you don’t plan ahead. The drug store has to actually call your insurance company to get this approved so beware and plan.
Once you have all your meds there are several ways to transport them with you. It’s very cumbersome to carry all your med bottles so I have come up with some ideas. First you really need two sets of meds. If you are traveling with someone you should each have a set of meds. Even if you don’t have enough for two full sets for the time you are gone be sure your companion at least has a few days of everything you need. I know you aren’t planning to leave your bag on the plane but it does happen. And by the way, don’t EVER put your meds in your checked luggage. (My Mom says she has heard it all when it comes to patients out of town and out of medication.) Yes luggage does get lost, you do put down your carry on bag and forget it, some people even check their pills.
I take all my prescription labels and photocopy them on a single sheet. This is really helpful both for security and in case you end up needing to call about a refill. You can peel the labels off the bottles or just copy the extra info from the sheet/receipt you are given every time you fill your meds.
I then put one week supply of meds in a medication case. I’m giving a link to the one I use since it is very secure . I then put this in a zip lock gallon bag and put it in my bookbag. (I’ll be posting more about general packing tips in the future .) I put my copy of the labels in the bag with the pills. Then I take the bottles and make sure there is one full week longer than I plan on being away and put them in another ziplock bag. This goes in my companion’s bag. If you have those giant bottles of 3 month’s supply you have a couple of options. You can ask for a set of smaller bottles just to use for travel (be sure and label them or ask the pharmacist to label them for you), or you can set up a week’s supply for every week you are gone plus an extra and put this in your medication holder. Just be sure you have a copy of all the labels.
Hope you never leave home again without your meds. Your companion, your friends and your doctor will thank you. Remember if you have kids don’t use any pill containers that do not have safety caps. There is a 7 day pill container which is child proof.
2 thoughts on “Packing Prescriptions”
Very helpful and concise post.
I’m blown away by all the things you (and other handicapped folks) have to consider when preparing to travel. It makes traveling with a 2yo and a 5yo look like a breeze!!
Kevin O. Moran
The Andover Group
Senior Vice President – Wealth Management
UBS Financial Services Inc.
6100 Fairview Rd, 9th Floor
Charlotte, NC 28210
Phone: 704.362.8271 or 800.776.4848
Personal Fax: 855.333.7864
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