Medication whilst in flight

Reply

Old Nov 4, 18, 10:33 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: CHC
Programs: NZ Silver, Koru
Posts: 51
Medication whilst in flight

My daughter has some medication that needs to be kept refrigerated and she will need to take some in flight between CHC & OOL.

In my mind we have 2 options RE the refrigeration side of things.

A. Ask a Flight Attendant nicely if they can keep it in the Galley fridge or
B. Pack in in a small cooler bag with ice packs.

I would prefer option A.

I would think that Security would have an issue not knowing what the frozen liquid was if we went down the option B route.

Any thoughts / advice, would be much appreciated.
dgwills is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 4, 18, 10:56 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: South Island, New Zealand
Programs: Krisflyer, Qantas Frequent Flyer, Air NZ Airpoints, Koru, and former *G
Posts: 203
I would certainly ask the crew if they could assist and would be surprised if they had any issues with it. Some years ago we took some Bluff oysters to London without problem and both crews were more than happy to keep them chilled for us.
ottiehund is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 4, 18, 11:24 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: AKL
Programs: NZ Silver
Posts: 1,668
Originally Posted by dgwills View Post
My daughter has some medication that needs to be kept refrigerated and she will need to take some in flight between CHC & OOL.

In my mind we have 2 options RE the refrigeration side of things.

A. Ask a Flight Attendant nicely if they can keep it in the Galley fridge or
B. Pack in in a small cooler bag with ice packs.

I would prefer option A.

I would think that Security would have an issue not knowing what the frozen liquid was if we went down the option B route.

Any thoughts / advice, would be much appreciated.
I'd say security wouldn't allow the ice pack. If it is something like amoxicillin (common anti-biotic) it would be fine for that short period out of the fridge. Best bet would be to check with your pharmacist though, they will be the best person to advise you as I'm sure they get these questions a lot.
brenrox is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 12:07 am
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: CHC
Programs: NZ Silver, Koru
Posts: 51
Originally Posted by brenrox View Post
I'd say security wouldn't allow the ice pack. If it is something like amoxicillin (common anti-biotic) it would be fine for that short period out of the fridge. Best bet would be to check with your pharmacist though, they will be the best person to advise you as I'm sure they get these questions a lot.
I asked the Pharmacist when I picked up the medication & it was them that suggested option A.
Thanks.

dgwills is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 4:44 am
  #5  
2019 FlyerTalk Awards
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: SIN
Programs: NZ*E, QF Gold, Hilton Gold
Posts: 185
Originally Posted by dgwills View Post
I asked the Pharmacist when I picked up the medication & it was them that suggested option A.
Thanks.
To be blunt, if the pharmacist is suggesting Option A I doubt they've actually tried it. The airline/fa will not want to take responsibility for medication getting any of; too cold, too hot, forgotten, damaged, contaminated, contaminating food etc.

As someone who has traveled for many years with refrigerated medication, I've never had any luck with Option A (indeed I don't even bother asking these days) and have always stuck with Option B.

On Option B, with regard to Liquids & Gels restrictions, security is generally understanding (there's plenty of medications that have this requirement!). Make sure you have:
  1. Appropriate documentation for the medication (eg. a copy of the prescription)
  2. A doctors letter stating the medication and its need to remain chilled.
  3. I'd also leave it in it's original packaging if possible too, especially if it states that it must remain chilled.
When at security, just stick to the facts if asked "I've got chiller packs because this medication must remain chilled".

I've had no issues with this approach whether in NZ or the US, so I'm sure it will be okay between NZ & AU.
Yoshi212, kpeterson, RTWFF and 3 others like this.
KiwiJC is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 6:11 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: AMS/RTM
Posts: 2,202
I requested NZ to use the fridge in the galley to store some medication and I was told it was not possible because of food contamination issues (decide for yourself whether to believe that). What I was offered (which is actually a reasonable solution) was to have some ice. So I would recommend you bring a few ziploc bags and get some ice from the galley, it will keep your medication chilled until destination.
fotographer, Often1 and RTWFF like this.
malmostoso is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 6:20 am
  #7  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
2019 FlyerTalk Awards
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Berlin, Germany; Toronto, Canada; and SW Florida, USA
Programs: UA 1K, BA Gold, Hyatt Globalist, and assorted others
Posts: 21,715
I would be surprised if A is an option.
Often1 and RTWFF like this.
LondonElite is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 6:31 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: GVA
Programs: BA Gold, LH FTL, KL/AF Ivory
Posts: 1,760
I'm diabetic and travel with insulin. When I first started I was a little paranoid about keeping it cool and KiwiJC has hit it on the nail. No flight attendant wants to take responsibility for keeping it in a controlled environment and they will respond that they can't do this. If you are concerned you can use cooling packs, but not freezer packs as they're far too cold.
I recently looked at the warnings on my insulin and it essentially said "store cool, once started maintain at room temperature". These days I just keep in my carryon and store in a fridge as soon as I get to my destination. I've never had it go bad on me. My 2 cents is that the insulin today is a lot more resilient than it used to be.
RTWFF and nancypants like this.
catandmouse is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 6:35 am
  #9  
Ambassador: Emirates
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Economy, mostly :(
Programs: Skywards Gold
Posts: 6,851
A combination. Bring a small insulated bag and get ice onboard. Aircraft don't have actual fridges generally, they have refrigerated drawers with ice
skywardhunter is online now  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 6:37 am
  #10  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 39,719
Are you certain that your aircraft will have an operating refrigerator? Those are not being installed or are being removed from many aircraft in favor of storage carts which are chilled and retain the cold (or do not heat the interior) for some period of time. Beyond that, many carriers have forbade the storage of anything, whether medication or food carried by passengers in proximity to carrier-supplied food, e.g. catering. What happened some time back, may not happen today.

I would suggest checking the package insert for specific instructions. Often medications which require chilling cannot be placed on ice, but can be stored in a small insulated container which will stay cool enough for 8-10 hours. If ice really is necessary, I would dump the landside ice before security and find some airside.
trooper and MSPeconomist like this.
Often1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 8:12 am
  #11  
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Houston
Programs: UA 1K and Million Miler, *A Gold, Marriott Bonvoy Lifetime Titanium, Hertz Five Star,
Posts: 590
Originally Posted by malmostoso View Post
I requested NZ to use the fridge in the galley to store some medication and I was told it was not possible because of food contamination issues (decide for yourself whether to believe that). What I was offered (which is actually a reasonable solution) was to have some ice. So I would recommend you bring a few ziploc bags and get some ice from the galley, it will keep your medication chilled until destination.
THIS!!! Bring a small insulated bag and do this. Even if you checked with the airline ahead of time you are subject to be told no to storing anything in the plane refrigerator by the FAs.
Collierkr is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 10:36 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: USA
Programs: AA Gold, UA Silver, DL, QF; HHonors Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 80
We were on an Emirates leg between MEL and AKL and the cabin crew kindly obliged with option A for an antibiotic that had been prescribed for my (at the time 4 year old) child in the middle of our trip. Unfortunately, in the mad rush to unload an A380 and get our kids and their blankets and teddy bears off intact, we completely forgot about it. A crew member went back to find it, but could not locate it (the cleaning crew was already at work, so likely disposed of it), thus we were able to experience your Kiwi healthcare as well.

All that to say, I would recommend some form of option B (or freezer bags and borrowing ice as a previous poster suggested). If you do use option A, do something to remind you to get your medicine before you disembark. The cabin crew are busy and not thinking about your medicine, and usually you are preoccupied as well. And those cleaning crews are efficient...
AussieExPat is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 12:50 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: New Zealand (most of the time)
Programs: NZ Elite *G, HHonors Diamond, IHG Platinum Elite
Posts: 4,047
Air NZ won't chill medicine for you.

Their website details things - https://www.airnewzealand.co.nz/spec...cal-conditions
writerguyfl likes this.
sbiddle is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 1:24 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: BNA (Nashville)
Programs: HH Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 1,741
I use a Frio pouch. It keeps the insulin from getting too warm. Keep in mind that even if they would store it for you, there is no guarantee it won't freeze, which, in my case, ruins the medication.

I learned that the hard way with a $300 box of insulin pens and a hotel fridge.

The Frio pouch does a good job of keeping my insulin cool, but NOT refrigerated, which is fine for insulin I use within 30 days.
bitterproffit is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Nov 5, 18, 2:05 pm
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: CHC
Programs: NZ Silver, Koru
Posts: 51
Originally Posted by sbiddle View Post
Air NZ won't chill medicine for you.

Their website details things - https://www.airnewzealand.co.nz/spec...cal-conditions
Thanks sbiddle, I was waiting for your input. You are very knowledgeable about all things ANZ.
I should have been able to find that myself.lol.
I will go down the cooler bag route.
dgwills is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread