Testing in the Skies

In the last few years, air travel security measures have changed significantly in the United States and abroad. Because traveling with diabetes necessitates traveling with medical sharps, there are some extra steps you may need to take to ensure access to your testing supplies while flying.

TravelingInsulin. Make sure you bring enough insulin for your entire trip. In fact, extra insulin is reccomended. Keep all original packaging and paperwork that come with your insulin so you can present the original printed pharmaceutical label for the medication at the airport security checkpoint. The same applies for Glucagon kits. Syringes will be allowed past security only if the accompanying medication is properly labeled.

Meters. The FAA will allow glucose meters and lancets in suitcases or carry-on baggage as long as meters are clearly marked with the manufacturer and/or brand name. Lancets should be capped and properly stored with the meter.

Pumps. Be sure to carry extra pump supplies and batteries. Also, bring long and rapid acting insulin, as well as a syringe, in the event of a pump malfunction. If you wear an insulin pump, inform airport security personnel and request that they visually inspect it rather than removing it. Have insulin documentation with you. If screeners insist you remove your insulin pump, ask to speak with a security checkpoint supervisor.

Allow plenty of time to get through these checkpoints. Plan on an additional 30 to 60 minutes in addition to whatever your airline is advising for advance arrival time.

Reviewed by Constance Brown-Riggs, MSEd, RD, CDE, CDN 7/14

See Next Insulin Tip.

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