Travelling with Benepali : Good morning, My uncle who... - NRAS


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Travelling with Benepali

julie1908 profile image

Good morning, My uncle who also has RA like me wants to travel to Uganda for 2 months and has asked me advice for how to transport his Benepali injections ie keeping them cool while travelling. He is not computer literate at all, so i said i would try to get some information for him. Any advice would be great. X

14 Replies

A couple of things for you to follow up on.

First check the rules about taking drugs into Uganda. Some countries have quite strict views about what you can and cannot bring in,

Second check that the hospital/clinic will provide a 2 month supply. It is a lot of money, so they can be reluctant to issue more than a month at a time.

Third check airline rules about what you can bring in board in hand luggage, as they will have to travel in hand luggage.

Forth check that your doctor/hospital/drug provider will give you a letter stating that these are necessary prescription drugs.

Then is all of those are ok, go and buy a proper medical cool bag that will last for the length of his journey until he gets to a fridge. Proper ones to fit 8 syringes are not cheap. I think Benepali is similar to my Enbrel so can be out of fridge for four weeks (check!). So at a pinch you can get a basic bag for 4 syringes and a proper one for the other 4. My bag fits 4 syringes and cost £90, but keeps them under 8degrees for 24-36 hours.

julie1908 profile image
julie1908 in reply to helixhelix

Thank you so much for this information it is very helpful x

Just out of interest what cool bag do you have because I’ll need to get one soon. Is it coolmed brand?

It’s a Pfizer one, square , blue and contains 5 gel blocks.

Thanks 👍

I haven’t been able to find one like this by Pfizer on line. Would you have a link by any chance please? 😊

Sorry, I don’t. It was bought in France, so may not be as available in the UK. But any of the square ones that say 2-8 degrees for 36 hours should be the same (square is useful to fit the syringes)

Thanks I’ll have a poke around the internet 😁 👍

Great advice from helixhelix and can’t add to that. But something else to consider is vaccinations. My nephew had to have a yellow fever vaccination to go to Uganda. If your Uncle has not already had it that might be an issue as it’s a live vaccine which you can’t have whilst on biologics. Given that he is immunocompromised it’s probably worth discussing with a GP or Rheumatologist to check all vaccination requirements are up to date.

I hope he has a great trip. It would certainly be an adventure. My Uncle used to visit Uganda a lot in the 80’s and 90’s. It’s a beautiful country - his photos of the scenery were amazing.

julie1908 profile image
julie1908 in reply to bpeal1

Thank you so much for your advice, I am taking notes and when I call him I can pass everything on to him. My uncle is 75 years old and has travelled all his life but he knows this will probably be his last long trip. He has been to Uganda before and made some very good friends there and that’s why he wants to go back. To tell you the truth I am a bit worried about him going for so long. X

I have Abatercept and the company nurse said to contact them if going away and they provide a chiller bag. But I don't know the cost as not booked the holidays yet. It's the new named company that used to be Healthcare at Home. Could be worth ringing the medication supplier?

Hide your worry, and wave him off with a big smile. My mum travelled independently until she was in her mid-80’s, which worried the life out us us. But so important for her. I truly believe it kept her motivated and stopped her fading away.

Just watch out that if ice packs are used they don't freeze the drug

Thank you everyone for your comments i have done my research and i have just purchased this one in the link and thought i would share for anyone that’s going on long haul travel. They have advised me that it will hold 20 Enbrel size pens which is perfect for my uncle as he is travelling for 3 months and needed to take 13 with him.

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