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Sending Medicines To Thailand From Uk


Guderian

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I may need to start sending some prescription medicines from the UK to my address in Thailand (Pattaya). This would be done once or twice a year. The medicines in question are extremely expensive (several thousand GBP at a time) and they cannot be bought in Thailand (I checked at Bangkok Hospital).

I've asked around and people generally recommend the usual courier services, though one guy who was also doing this, though for much cheaper drugs, said that DHL lost one lot of his medications. I can't take that risk, as the medicine is essential to me. I don't think insurance would help much either as, firstly, the medicines didn't actually cost me anything (a free prescription from my GP) and, secondly, even if insurance did pay out I can't buy replacements in Thailand. So I need a service that's pretty much 100% reliable.

Does anybody else do this, and how do you do it? Any recommendations for the best service to use?

Thanks for any help.

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if i was you i would go home and get a private presciption for a couple of years supply,i did that but mine were not too exspensive but i was sure i had them.after having heart surgery 4years ago i am doing ok on local and imported ones.have you asked a phamacy if they can get them for you if you know the supplier.

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if i was you i would go home and get a private presciption for a couple of years supply,i did that but mine were not too exspensive but i was sure i had them.after having heart surgery 4years ago i am doing ok on local and imported ones.have you asked a phamacy if they can get them for you if you know the supplier.

Bangkok Hospital can supply drugs that pharmacists are prohibited from dispensing, so if they say they can't get them then there's no way a pharmacy shop here will be selling the real thing. Also, I prefer to get these extremely expensive medicines free from the NHS rather than pay for them myself. One last point - there are so many fake drugs being sold in Asia that, even if I could find a local supplier, I wouldn't be willing to trust them (or their suppliers) with my life. The medications have to come from a UK-based pharmacy as far as I am concerned, so I just need to know what is the best and safest way to get them delivered here.

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I've been receiving medical supplies from the UK every month for the last three years. They have been sent via the Royal Mail's 'International Signed for' service. Always arrives within a week. The post office in Thailand charges 7 baht per package.

Thanks. Why do you have to pay the Thai Post Office 7 Baht?

How much do Royal Mail charge, and has anything ever got lost? Do you take out insurance or is that included in the price?

Have you ever had any Customs issues when the medicines arrive in Thailand?

(Sorry, a lot of questions, I know...)

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As you noted, some medicines can only be prescribed by a doctor, importing these medicins must follow strict prodedures. Tourist cna only take 30 days worth with them, with a prescription if it is a controlled drug.

If you state the medicines in question, Sheryl might be able to advise you.

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one thing i would like to know is how can you get these drugs free from the uk,surely you need a prescription from your doctor in person,have you left the uk and become a non-resident because you stated you want them sent once or twice a year,i was told when i left the uk i cannot get a prescription for drugs unless i was in the uk.then i would have to have a private one prescribed by my doctor.what i ment when i said try and get a pharmacy to order for you direct but if you have no intension of paying i think you are going to find it difficult,i am on life saving drugs for life but i still have to pay now i am living in thailand.it will be interesting to know how you can can do it.

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It's not that difficult to create a scenario whereby the UK thinks you are resident whilst living in Thailand. I know of one gentleman in Phuket who has been doing the same for fifteen years using his sisters address, he pays a small amount of UK tax each year, doesn't declare his earnings in Thailand but collects his UK pension (with annual increases) and uses the NHS freely, all illegal of course.

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It's not that difficult to create a scenario whereby the UK thinks you are resident whilst living in Thailand. I know of one gentleman in Phuket who has been doing the same for fifteen years using his sisters address, he pays a small amount of UK tax each year, doesn't declare his earnings in Thailand but collects his UK pension (with annual increases) and uses the NHS freely, all illegal of course.

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It's not that difficult to create a scenario whereby the UK thinks you are resident whilst living in Thailand. I know of one gentleman in Phuket who has been doing the same for fifteen years using his sisters address, he pays a small amount of UK tax each year, doesn't declare his earnings in Thailand but collects his UK pension (with annual increases) and uses the NHS freely, all illegal of course.

And immoral.

I have a friend in the UK with HIV and pays get very expensive medice there. He could lie to them and move here but he is honest.

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one thing i would like to know is how can you get these drugs free from the uk,surely you need a prescription from your doctor in person,have you left the uk and become a non-resident because you stated you want them sent once or twice a year,i was told when i left the uk i cannot get a prescription for drugs unless i was in the uk.then i would have to have a private one prescribed by my doctor.what i ment when i said try and get a pharmacy to order for you direct but if you have no intension of paying i think you are going to find it difficult,i am on life saving drugs for life but i still have to pay now i am living in thailand.it will be interesting to know how you can can do it.

The NHS has rules about who can get free medicines and treatment, and who has to pay. The last time I checked, about 7 or 8 years back, if you were leaving the country for more than 2 months then you were supposed to de-register with your GP. My GP is one of those old-fashioned folk who think that his patients matter more than the stupid rules they keep inventing, so he knows that I live in Thailand but he has no problem with keeping me on his books. Since my medical condition is one of the more complicated ones, I am classed as a 'difficult patient' or whatever the term is, and he gets paid extra for looking after me. So maintaining the status quo is in the best interests of us both. Once a year I see a consultant in a specialist unit in a hospital in the Midlands, and have a full check-up. The good people there all know that I spend most of the year in Thailand but they have no problem with taking care of me.

One thing that concerns me a bit is that my GP has always been a one-man practice, but under the new town redevelopment plan he is supposed to move into one of those ghastly modern factory-clinic facilities where whatever doctor you happen to see is very unlikely to actually be your GP. It's another reason for checking out the best way to send medicines to Thailand, as if that happens they may be less keen to write me prescriptions for 6 months at a time, as my GP is happy to do. He told me that that is the legal maximum he can give me at one time.

Personally I couldn't be bothered with trying to hoodwink the state pension system as the amount is so small that I don't worry about it, but continuous and easy access to a GP and the NHS are essential to me. As to how to go about it, well obviously a lot will depend on who you are dealing with and how much they believe in following 'the rules'. Your best bet is probably to play your cards close to your chest and simply not to tell anyone, but it sounds as if it's too late for you to do that.

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so your doctor is defrauding the gov.gets paid extra for looking after you,you also stated the drugs were exspensive,yet you say the amount is so small which is it?i can sleep at night knowing i am an honest person,if i was you i would be con cerned who is reading this topic.

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Can you please stick to the topic in the thread title, i.e. how best to send medicines to Thailand from the UK?

If you wish to pontificate about your misguided sense of morality, go and start your own thread. :angry:

struck a nerve have i

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Can you please stick to the topic in the thread title, i.e. how best to send medicines to Thailand from the UK?

If you wish to pontificate about your misguided sense of morality, go and start your own thread. :angry:

struck a nerve have i

No need for this please; stick to the topic as it is something that may be very relevant to many other members out there..

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Reply by Meatboy deleted. The following applies:

The thread discussed "safest" (and legal; this we will monitor) way to get prescription drugs into Thailand. This is the relevant aspect of it we would like to address.

The reasons for having "prescription drugs" (this implies that a legal prescription was issued to obtain them for purposes of this discussion) is beyond the discussion.

Opinions on whether is was obtained "legally" or "fraudulently" outside of Thailand is not relevant to this discussion.

Forum rules clearly state that accusing another member of an illegal activity, in- or outside Thailand, on the forum can not be allowed for obvious reasons.

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I've been receiving medical supplies from the UK every month for the last three years. They have been sent via the Royal Mail's 'International Signed for' service. Always arrives within a week. The post office in Thailand charges 7 baht per package.

Thanks. Why do you have to pay the Thai Post Office 7 Baht?

How much do Royal Mail charge, and has anything ever got lost? Do you take out insurance or is that included in the price?

Have you ever had any Customs issues when the medicines arrive in Thailand?

(Sorry, a lot of questions, I know...)

My understanding is that the 7 baht is a handling charge for a parcel that arrives from a location outside of Thailand. More than that, I don't know.

The Royal Mail charge about £17 sterling for sending my package to Thailand via their 'International signed for' service but it all depends on weight (check their website). As already stated, to date I've never had one not arrive. I should add that as far as I am aware, the parcel is only tracked whilst in the UK but the Thai postman always gets me to sign for the parcel.

I've never had any customs issues. The parcel has a UK customs declaration sticker which states that the contents are medical supplies and in the 'value' box are the letters "NCV" (No Commercial Value).

Edited by prodriver
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If the medication is not approved for use in Thailand you could indeed potentially have customs issues. Or legal ones, if they are controlled or restrited substances in Thailand.

Really cannot advise without knowing what the medications are.

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Can you please stick to the topic in the thread title, i.e. how best to send medicines to Thailand from the UK?

If you wish to pontificate about your misguided sense of morality, go and start your own thread. :angry:

struck a nerve have i

No need for this please; stick to the topic as it is something that may be very relevant to many other members out there..

Thank you for getting the thread back on topic.

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I've been receiving medical supplies from the UK every month for the last three years. They have been sent via the Royal Mail's 'International Signed for' service. Always arrives within a week. The post office in Thailand charges 7 baht per package.

Thanks. Why do you have to pay the Thai Post Office 7 Baht?

How much do Royal Mail charge, and has anything ever got lost? Do you take out insurance or is that included in the price?

Have you ever had any Customs issues when the medicines arrive in Thailand?

(Sorry, a lot of questions, I know...)

My understanding is that the 7 baht is a handling charge for a parcel that arrives from a location outside of Thailand. More than that, I don't know.

The Royal Mail charge about £17 sterling for sending my package to Thailand via their 'International signed for' service but it all depends on weight (check their website). As already stated, to date I've never had one not arrive. I should add that as far as I am aware, the parcel is only tracked whilst in the UK but the Thai postman always gets me to sign for the parcel.

I've never had any customs issues. The parcel has a UK customs declaration sticker which states that the contents are medical supplies and in the 'value' box are the letters "NCV" (No Commercial Value).

Thanks. That's helpful to know. I've just gone back to the UK for a few weeks, so I will pack up an example of what I would need to send back and take it to the local Post Office and ask them how much it would cost.

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If the medication is not approved for use in Thailand you could indeed potentially have customs issues. Or legal ones, if they are controlled or restrited substances in Thailand.

Really cannot advise without knowing what the medications are.

They are not illegal or controlled in Thailand, they are immunosuppresants for a particular type of organ transplant (mycophenolate mofetil). Bangkok Hospital did say that they could order them from Singapore for me, no problem getting a local prescription for them, but it would probably cost a lot. Admittedly, that was a few years back and things may have changed now, so I should probably check with them again the next time I visit. As previously mentioned, though, with the number of fake high-value medicines circulating around South and South-east Asia, I don't think I'd want to risk my life on a local supplier.

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Reply by Meatboy deleted. The following applies:

The thread discussed "safest" (and legal; this we will monitor) way to get prescription drugs into Thailand. This is the relevant aspect of it we would like to address.

The reasons for having "prescription drugs" (this implies that a legal prescription was issued to obtain them for purposes of this discussion) is beyond the discussion.

Opinions on whether is was obtained "legally" or "fraudulently" outside of Thailand is not relevant to this discussion.

Forum rules clearly state that accusing another member of an illegal activity, in- or outside Thailand, on the forum can not be allowed for obvious reasons.

message understood :jap:

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A post discussing moderation has been deleted.

However it would be useful for the OP to say where he is now, just for clarity.

I returned to the UK yesterday. I'll be here for around 3 to 4 weeks. No hospital appointments this trip, thankfully, but my GP always insists on taking a few blood samples whenever I drop by. No complaints, he's looked after my whole family for decades and he's a great guy. He will give me a prescription for what I need to take back to Thailand with me.

I'm just wondering if I ever wanted to get the medicines sent to Thailand, for whatever reason - maybe one day I'll have an accident, or fall ill in Thailand, and be unable to travel back to the UK, who knows? - how it would be best to do it? prodriver has already given me some useful information. Does anyone else have any experiences with this?

Another question for prodriver if he's still watching: do you include a copy of your prescription with the package when you send it?

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A post discussing moderation has been deleted.

However it would be useful for the OP to say where he is now, just for clarity.

Another question for prodriver if he's still watching: do you include a copy of your prescription with the package when you send it?

The short answer is no.

I will just add that the package contains mostly colostomy bags. I have written on this forum before about the extremely limited supply/choice of this type of product that is available in Thailand.

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the best way is ordinary air mail. Least customs problems/delays and fastest.

If concerned about risk of loss, registered mail (stikll ordinary postal service) and may be able to insure the package at the sending end, I don't know anything about the UK postal system in that regard.

The overwhelming experience of TV members (and myself) is that courier service makes things harder and slower, not the opposite.

If the medication is one that requires a prescription in Thailand (as certainly any immunosuppressent would) then the drugs should have prescription labels on them.

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If the medication is not approved for use in Thailand you could indeed potentially have customs issues. Or legal ones, if they are controlled or restrited substances in Thailand.

Really cannot advise without knowing what the medications are.

They are not illegal or controlled in Thailand, they are immunosuppresants for a particular type of organ transplant (mycophenolate mofetil). Bangkok Hospital did say that they could order them from Singapore for me, no problem getting a local prescription for them, but it would probably cost a lot. Admittedly, that was a few years back and things may have changed now, so I should probably check with them again the next time I visit. As previously mentioned, though, with the number of fake high-value medicines circulating around South and South-east Asia, I don't think I'd want to risk my life on a local supplier.

1. Concerns re fake versions not warranted in Thailand. The only cases of counterfeits here involve a few items of high appeal to tourists (Viagra/cialis and the like). It is not at all like the situation in Viet Nam and Cambodia where a very wide range of fake pharamceuticals are on the market. Certainly you are not going to find counterfeit mycophenolate mofetil for sale here and in any event, it is not locally made, the only available form is CellCept which is an import (and of course very expensive).

2. It is a controlled drug in Thailand. Category S, Special Controlled Drug. Illegal for sale except on prescription and strict regulations on accounting for sales. That being so it is imperative that any you have sent to you be clearly labelled with a doctor's name, your name etc. It would also be advisable to have a doctor's letter or medical summary on hand explaining your need for the drug (and good idea to have in any case, should you for example need medical care while in Thailand).

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If the medication is not approved for use in Thailand you could indeed potentially have customs issues. Or legal ones, if they are controlled or restrited substances in Thailand.

Really cannot advise without knowing what the medications are.

They are not illegal or controlled in Thailand, they are immunosuppresants for a particular type of organ transplant (mycophenolate mofetil). Bangkok Hospital did say that they could order them from Singapore for me, no problem getting a local prescription for them, but it would probably cost a lot. Admittedly, that was a few years back and things may have changed now, so I should probably check with them again the next time I visit. As previously mentioned, though, with the number of fake high-value medicines circulating around South and South-east Asia, I don't think I'd want to risk my life on a local supplier.

1. Concerns re fake versions not warranted in Thailand. The only cases of counterfeits here involve a few items of high appeal to tourists (Viagra/cialis and the like). It is not at all like the situation in Viet Nam and Cambodia where a very wide range of fake pharamceuticals are on the market. Certainly you are not going to find counterfeit mycophenolate mofetil for sale here and in any event, it is not locally made, the only available form is CellCept which is an import (and of course very expensive).

2. It is a controlled drug in Thailand. Category S, Special Controlled Drug. Illegal for sale except on prescription and strict regulations on accounting for sales. That being so it is imperative that any you have sent to you be clearly labelled with a doctor's name, your name etc. It would also be advisable to have a doctor's letter or medical summary on hand explaining your need for the drug (and good idea to have in any case, should you for example need medical care while in Thailand).

Thanks for the information.

I always carry a copy of the prescription and a letter from the hospital explaining my condition when I travel, but in 7 years of living in Thailand and travelling extensively both in the SE Asia region, and regularly back and forth to the UK, I have never once had to show them. There's always a first time, though, so best to be prepared.

I'm not convinced that air mail is the way to go. The one and only time I ever tried to send a small gift from England to a friend in Phuket, it simply disappeared en-route. I know a Thai postman wouldn't have a clue what the drugs were, but he may still see an opportunity to make a few Baht on the side. It may slow things down and make it more expensive, but it seems to me that the Post Office service which is signed for on delivery, as suggested by prodriver, would probably be the best way to go.

Do you know anything about what was mentioned above, that you should only import a single month's supply at a time? If the GP writes a prescription for several months, and you include a copy of it inside the package, would that not be adequate?

Edited by Guderian
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The rule is 30 days. That said, I have not known any instance where tablets were counted out. The spirit behind the law is to prevent people from bringing in drugs for resale without a proper (read: unobtainable for a farang) FDA license.

You can register an air mail package. Liek you I have had a fair amount of ordinary air mail get lost (and not just packages..even simple letters). But knock on wood to date i have never had anything sent registered mail go missing.

In addition many countries' postal services will let you insure a registered parcel.

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