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Need to travel with prescriptions from US into China

Need to travel with prescriptions from US into China

Old Jan 25, 19, 9:43 am
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Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1
Need to travel with prescriptions from US into China

I need to know what the LEGAL equivalent to Adderall is in China. Since Adderall is illegal, I would like to bring a legal equivalent with me, so I don't get into trouble with customs.

I will be traveling for 90 days and will need to bring a 3 month supply of all my medications with me, too.

What do you recommend?
Is there a website that lists what prescriptions are legal?
ttyllakrug is offline  
Old Jan 27, 19, 10:48 am
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MIMS is probably the best single online resource as far as drug availability in a given country, but I don't think their China site has an English version. There is a signup process to get access.

You have a problem. I believe that Adderall/Mydayis and Concerta are not available in China. Ritalin is available under restriction, but its use tends to be limited to children and a small cohort of the obese for weight control. Expats living in China with children on prescribed Ritalin, do not report problems bringing it in. Short-term visitors (adult or child) bringing in just enough Ritalin to cover their needs, seem to not have an issue....normally they don't even declare but do travel with the medication in original packaging and carry a doctor's note stating the diagnosis and treatment that includes this drug. Adderall is another matter entirely, and I've heard zero data points on carrying it in. Whether Ritalin is a medically-appropriate substitute for you is a question for your doctor. Even then, I'm not sure that makes your importation issues go away.

Your problem is two-fold: 1) the drug itself and 2) the amount you are bringing in. At a minimum, you should get a doctor's note on his letterhead, signed. Your name as it appears on your passport, diagnosis/reason for treatment with this drug (that applies to Adderall or any other drugs in this class), dosage. The original letter of course in English. If you have time and ability to find someone to do the translation, into Chinese as well though that's less important. However, I would still be uneasy about this particular drug and would go further. While I've never heard of this done for individuals, it might be worth a shot to make an inquiry of Chinese Customs office at whichever location you will first enter the country--Beijing or Shanghai airports, for instance--and see if there is any type of pre-authorization, predeclaration, import exemption for personal use. I'd use a Chinese writer/speaker to email/phone if possible, vs trying to communicate in English. If it is possible, it would be worth trying to get this documentation. Chinese Embassy/Consulates are not renowned for their ability to enlighten one, but you could try that first, to see what the process might be (if any is available) and if they have any specific Customs contacts to give you.

Usually for things like valium or lightweight stuff, I wouldn't bother with anything more than the doctor's note and original packaging. But Adderall is heavy-duty and there are very few diagnoses that it is prescribed for. The most typical, ADHD, is basically not accepted as more than a "children's problem" in China, so any adult carrying the drug without authorization could be suspected of being an addict. And 90 days' supply raises suspicions especially if time in China is well under that. In some ways, this is even worse than carrying opioids for pain control, because at least the Chinese do acknowledge that there are a wide range of diagnoses for pain and treatment that includes opioids.

If your travels will not be 90 days inside China but only a small part of the total time, and if your travels afterward will take you to a place where Adderall is legal and available, another option would be to limit the initial amount you take to only what you need for the in-China time. Minimize the amount, you theoretically decrease the risk of serious consequences if found. You would then get additional Adderall post-China...though of course there are issues with that as well. Another option, if your travel is discretionary, is to simply change plans and avoid China entirely. Whether the other countries on your itinerary are Adderall-friendlier, is unclear.
jiejie is offline  

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