What’s the best way to have a good trip? Be prepared. Start with this checklist of things to do three to six months before you travel.
- Check in with your CF center before booking your trip to make sure you get a travel note and to assess your medical status. If you are not feeling well, you may need to be treated prior to your trip. You also should discuss a plan for treatments if you become sick and any impact time-zone differences may have on timed medications.
- Check on immunizations required for international travel.
- Make lists of medication and supplies you will need on your trip ahead of time. (Check and recheck this list!)
- Make sure you request a refrigerator at the place you will be staying for medications that need to be kept cold.
- Count all medications well ahead of your trip and get refills (order a month or so in advance if you use a mail-order pharmacy). You may need to talk with your insurance provider for refills needed prior to your trip; some will provide a “vacation allowance.”
What to Pack
- Make a list of emergency contacts in case you become sick or have problems with such things as your luggage.
- Bring a list of doctors who specialize in CF so you can get appropriate care if needed. Check the CF Foundation's website (for national travel) and Cystic Fibrosis Worldwide (for international travel) for locations of CF centers.
- Bring your insurance information in case you need to visit a CF care center.
- Pack alcohol-based hand sanitizer with you for good hand hygiene.
- Bring a prepaid phone card to contact your own CF center for advice in an emergency. These cards also are good to have if your cell phone does not work. You also may want to ask your cell phone company for a loaner phone for international travel.
- Bring instructions for your medical equipment in case of a malfunction (e.g., problems with your insulin pump).
- Bring a calendar of times and details on taking your medications to help those with you if needed.
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