Travelling safely: Medical information


Close lesson
You have completed 0%

Travelling safely: Medical information

A medical bag

What's coming up?

In this activity you’ll find out about what medical information you should take travelling, in order to keep safe and secure.

Start activity
A plane and some medical information next to medications

Medical requirements don't mean you can't travel

If you have a medical or health condition, especially one that requires special medication, you might feel anxious about travelling.

But don’t worry. As long as you carry some basic information (as well as your medicines, of course!) you can still travel safely and securely.

A range of medical documents

Medical information you should carry

You can have a card made up and laminated, or carry the following information saved as a document on your mobile phone. It’s important to carry information about:

  • Any life-threatening illness or condition
  • Your allergies, especially if you are allergic to medicines such as penicillin
  • Your blood type
  • Prescription information about your medicines, as rules about medicines are different in different places
  • Vaccination information, to show you are up to date.

Vaccinations for travelling

When you travel in Australia, your normal vaccinations cover you. But when you go overseas you may need extra vaccinations, especially for diseases not found here, such as malaria or rabies.

You can find more information about vaccinations, including what vaccines you might need depending on where you plan to go, by visiting the Health section of the government's Smart Traveller website.

The smart traveller website showing information on different diseases
A travel insurance document and a medicare card

How Medicare helps when travelling

Medicare is great when you travel in Australia, because in an emergency you will be covered. However, overseas you are not covered by Medicare, and might have to pay quite a lot out of pocket for medical care.

In this situation, a travel insurance policy can help, and some policies even cover medical bills up to several million dollars.

Some countries do support Australia’s Medicare system with some coverage, and you can find out more by typing into your web browser’s search page.

Taking prescription medicines overseas

When it comes to prescription medications, there are different rules in different countries meaning that some common medications in Australia are completely banned elsewhere.

Before you plan your trip, talk to your doctor about your prescriptions and whether they could be a problem in the country you are hoping to visit.

A bottle of medication
An icon of a padlock

eSafety tip

If you have a good supply of the prescription medications that you purchased here in Australia before you left, make sure to take all the original packaging with you.

You will be able to show that the medicines have been prescribed to you. If the prescription information isn’t on the packaging, take your prescription slip as well.

The Smart Traveller website logo

Keep up to date

While the COVID-19 or Coronavirus pandemic continues, travel to some overseas destinations may not be possible, or may require quarantine on arrival.

Some destinations might also require a negative Covid PCR test before departure.

Be sure to check the website regularly for up-to-date information about the rules that apply to your trip.

A folder with a range of medical documents in it

Well done!

This is the end of the Travelling Safely: Medical Information activity. You’ve learned about what medical information you need to take with you when travelling.

Up next, you can learn about how to protect yourself and your belongings overseas, in the All about travel insurance activity.