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Staying Healthy on the Road Medical info, e.g. malaria, vaccinations, travel medical tips, medical insurance, where to find a doctor.
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Old 17 Oct 2014
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Taking prescription medication into the Stans - Specific information required


Could anyone who has personality taken prescription medication into either Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan or Uzbekistan answer a few questions for me?

Did you declare it on the customs declaration?
Did you have more medication than the length of your visa?
Did they check the name of medication against any lists?
If so was this a simple list of banned substances or was it a medical book listing all medication and what conditions they are for?
Did they ask what they were for?
How through was the customs check, did they go through all bags and clothes?

Also has anyone had any experience shipping medication into any of these countries prior to arrival.

Many Thanks
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Old 26 Oct 2014
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Hi John

wondering why you ask that specific question?
prescribed medication shouldn't be much of an issue at any border crossing if you have the prescription paperwork, unless the drugs are similar to any illegal substances.

I have to carry a supply of warfarin, but don't expect any issues...
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Old 26 Oct 2014
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Never had any problems carrying up to 7 months supply of drugs prescribed in the UK. always carry a copy of the prescription with me.
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Old 27 Oct 2014
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We crossed through Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan in 2010- so things may have changed since then. Turkmenistan border officials did a very cursory search of our belongings but had an amazingly complex set of stations to wend our way through before they let us proceed.

Uzbekistan border agents were different, however. The search of our luggage was not over the top- I've been searched much more thoroughly going north from the US into Canada.

But, they were extremely interested in the contents of our first aid kits, going through every item and asking us questions about them. (I think they are looking for painkillers, opiates, codeine, etc.) They asked me if they could keep a sample of the water purification tablets I was carrying.

I was carrying a ten day supply of an antibiotic, which they checked against a list in their notebook. They looked at everything, but didn't get too concerned about over-the counter meds. If I recall correctly they told us to note everything in the kits on a list that they would check when we exited UZ.

They also wanted a complete list, to be checked upon exit, of all of our electronic devices (camera, gps, computer, phone, etc.) and an exact accounting of the amount of cash: Euros, dollars, etc, that we had.

Personally, I took the Uzbek border crossing very seriously. I think, especially with prescription opiates, you could be accused of trying to smuggle in drugs for sale if you had any quantity at all. This is just my opinion, but it's what I would consider if I were going back.

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Old 19 Feb 2015
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I was in the 'Stans July and August, 2014. I carry my usual old man meds, like Lisinopril, Lipitor, etc. The only time I had a problem was entering Uzbekistan when I actually listed the meds on the customs form. I had to take them all out, show them, explain them, as well as the letter from the doctor and the prescriptions. After that, I never declared them again. (They had a PDR at the desk! It was in English, but I think they used it to look at the pills shown in the book to compare them with the actual pills being carried by the traveller.)

For some reason, they are very interested in the water purification tablets. They asked about mine three times, and I showed them to them twice (he forgot that he asked . . .). They wanted to open a sterile pack from my first aid kit, and I told them they could if they wanted, but them it would be useless and I would have to throw it away. They did not open it.

When I left Uzbekistan, I went through the same thing with the water purification tablets. I also had a pat down search for drugs -- I must look suspicious. Then the guy kept asking me about guns. I finally told him I don't carry a gun because if I did, he would arrest me. He shut up. When I left though, he told me to be very, very careful, because it is very dangerous in Tajikistan, and I was a very old man.

I thanked him for his service . . .
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Old 26 Feb 2015
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I was in Tajikistan last year. I took insulin and other meds with me. I went through customs fine and not challenged. I did take an open letter from my GP and the printed off list of prescribed drugs but I have never had to use this in any country I have been in .
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Old 26 Feb 2015
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I take a load of stuff with me. Open heart surgery. Never tell them. Got caught once on a search. But had a repeat from my Doctor. Kind of got by with that. Thought it was a bit strange that I had tea bag's in a self sealer bag. Had a good look at them. Some how they would not believe they where just tea bag. But we sell tea bag's in our country. Not like UK tea I say. Then one of them said " He's English " and let me go. Just made me smile. More trouble over tea bag's than all the rest.

To buy petrol in Europe. Pull up at station. Wait. Get out a 20 Euro note, then ask someone to fill up the bike. Give person money. Ride away. Simple.
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Old 22 Mar 2015
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You're probably fine if you've got the paperwork. Might be different if it's a narcotic without a perscription instead of a maintenance medication though.
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Old 13 Aug 2015
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Please be careful about this issue.

I am on a RTW trip

I was fully checked when i entered Uzbekistan, with no problems about any of my medicines.

When i was gonna exit towards Tayikistan, they asked me again for my medicines. i gave them my first aid kit. The saw one -Diazepam - that i take for my back problems, and told me it was forbidden. I had medical prescription and the invoice from the Spanish pharmacy.

To make the story short. I stayed 5 days in custody in Termiz. Got blood an Urine Analysis. Thankfully i had not taken the medicine in the last 9 months. I Was declared gulity before they listened my declaration in a totally corrupted process, wich involved the border department and the intelligence service.

A Brithis guy was in the same situation as me because 8 pills of a pain killer.

He is still in custody. This happened last saturday.

So take care about the corruption and medicines in Uzbekistan.
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kyrgyzstan, prescription medication, tajikistan, turkmenistan, uzbekistan

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