Regulations for Flying With Prescription Drugs

Written by eryn chenevert
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Regulations for Flying With Prescription Drugs
Flying with prescription drugs doesn't have to be complicated. (aeroplane image by Christine F Saulnier from Fotolia.com)

When travelling, the least of your worries should be whether you are allowed to bring medication with you on your flight. Limitations on carry-on luggage items, as well as the possibility of paying for checked bags, may be a cause for concern for passengers who require medical supplies.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) allows for the screening carriage of all medications and medical equipment. Pack your medicines and equipment separately to allow for a smoother screening process.

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Allowed Items

All over-the-counter and prescriptions drugs used for medical purposes are allowed during travel.

Among the items allowed are water, juice, liquid nutrition, gels, life support liquids (blood, bone marrow, organs for transplant), cosmetic medical products (prosthetic equipment, bras or shells containing saline or other gels), pills and inhalers.

Prohibited Items

The TSA does not prohibit any medically necessary items. Medical items of more than 85.1gr. or those that do not fit in your zip-top plastic bag must be disclosed to security personnel at the checkpoint.

Implanted Medical Devices

Passengers with implanted medical equipment, including pacemakers and defibrillators, may request a hand pat if the X-ray machine or hand wanding will affect their devices. Passengers also have the right to request discretion from the screener if they would like to keep it private. Most checkpoints have a covered area where passengers may be privately screened.

Screening Process

Medical supplies are normally run through X-ray machines along with all other luggage. However, you may request a visual inspection prior to beginning the screening process. Screening personnel will require that you handle your own medication to prevent contamination or damage.

External Medical Equipment

Medical equipment including respiratory aids and mobility equipment are also allowed. All equipment undergoes screening by checkpoint personnel. You may ask for assistance from personnel while your equipment is being screened, if necessary.

If there is anything that is not removable, disclose this information to the security team so that they may screen your property without causing any damage. Examples of items applicable are wheelchairs, crutches, and walkers.

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