Equipment & medicines abroad

Selecting the equipment to be taken abroad should also be based on a risk assessment, taking into account the facilities that will be provided and made available in an emergency. Contact with medical resources in the country being visited is essential, at the earliest opportunity. Ideally agreement for the provision of medical services and equipment should be confirmed in writing. If there is any doubt over this provision, it is suggested all potentially required equipment and medicines based on the risk assessment for the trip and events should be taken with you - “pack your own parachute".

Of particular importance is ensuring adequate medical insurance is in place to prevent any delay in accessing medical care, investigations including imaging, especially emergency services.

When planning to take equipment abroad it is essential that mandatory paperwork/forms  in order to carry and return with equipment and in particular the medicines, are obtained from the home country’s government offices. It is often a requirement to list all controlled drugs and other medicines using their generic name, concentration, route of administration and quantity.

In addition, contact should be made with the government agencies of the visiting countries to obtain the required documentation from their respective agencies, to be allowed to enter the country and meet all customs requirements. Some medicines and some medical gases are not permitted in some countries.

These administrative processes can take considerable time periods, it is therefore essential contact is made with the relevant agencies at the earliest opportunity to start the processes and obtain the required documentation, in time for travel.