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Prescription

Bringing Medications or Filling Prescriptions Abroad

A traveler going abroad with a preexisting medical problem should carry a letter from their attending physician describing the medical condition and any prescription medications, including the generic names of prescribed drugs. Any medications being carried overseas should be left in their original containers and be clearly labeled. Travelers should check with the foreign embassy of the country they are visiting to make sure any required medications are not considered to be illegal narcotics. A listing of foreign embassies and consulates in the U.S. is available on the Department of State’s website. Foreign embassy and consulate contact information can also be found on the Country Specific Information for each country.

Make sure you have enough medication to last the duration of the trip, including extra medicine in case your travel plans change. Always carry your prescriptions in their labeled containers, not in a pill pack, and remember to pack your medication in your carry-on bag, since checked baggage is occasionally lost.

If you have allergies, reactions to certain medications, foods, or insect bites, or other unique medical problems, consider wearing a “medical alert” bracelet. You may also wish to carry a letter from your physician explaining required treatment should you become ill.