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Old 22-06-2014, 05:47   #1
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Question Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

I now need blood pressure meds but the max prescription duration I can get is for 3 months, but I will be away from "civilisation" for a lot longer. I know that some places you can get these meds but it's not v reliable. Has anyone figured a way of getting meds for longer than 3 months? I'm in UK now, but will be sailing from New Zealand in 3 wks towards Vanuatu or somewhere...I've seen internet pharmacies but I'm rather nervous. Cost is also a factor as my budget is a bit small!
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Old 22-06-2014, 06:57   #2
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

It took some doing, but I managed to talk the doctor into getting 6 months, so keep working on them...maybe they can find a way.
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Old 22-06-2014, 08:34   #3
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

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Originally Posted by martienssen View Post
I now need blood pressure meds but the max prescription duration I can get is for 3 months, but I will be away from "civilisation" for a lot longer. I know that some places you can get these meds but it's not v reliable. Has anyone figured a way of getting meds for longer than 3 months? I'm in UK now, but will be sailing from New Zealand in 3 wks towards Vanuatu or somewhere...I've seen internet pharmacies but I'm rather nervous. Cost is also a factor as my budget is a bit small!
You do not need to rely on internet pharmacies that are suspect (at least the ones that focus on cross-border business to avoid regulation. In most countries you will not have problem getting whatever they use there without a prescription unless you need psychiatric meds or serious pain meds. I am afraid you will have to pay 100%, which is a new thing for someone used to the UK.

You did not say how important is for you to get them at the NHS price.

Just two suggestions:

1) Confirm in advance that the drug you are using is used widely outside the UK. That is more of an issue if you are getting some fancy drug in the US, but should not be an issue because the NHS tends to go slow with new stuff. With the generic name of the drug ask Google to find you the phone numbers and some brick and mortar pharmacies in Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, Fiji, etc. Then you can check price, availability, hos much fuss about not having a local prescription, etc.

By the way, I use lisinopril, did what I suggest above and confirmed it would be easy to get in several places in the Caribbean, Panama and all the way to the French Polynesia.

2) Only as a backup, ask your doctor to recommend you alternative drugs that could do the job. In each family of BP drugs there are many that are very similar, and in some countries you cannot find them all. In my case my doctor gave me a couple of alternatives (all ending with "pril" not surprisingly) and the dosage of each.

Good luck!
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Old 22-06-2014, 09:30   #4
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

My guess is that passage making on a junk-rigged schooner ought to contribute significantly to lowering your blood pressure.

Are you taking a cuff along so that you can monitor your own BP while underway? Set up a meeting with your doctor to learn how to modify dosages if appropriate during the passage, and then ask for a six-month supply during that meeting.
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Old 22-06-2014, 10:18   #5
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

Quote:
Originally Posted by martienssen View Post
I now need blood pressure meds but the max prescription duration I can get is for 3 months, but I will be away from "civilisation" for a lot longer. I know that some places you can get these meds but it's not v reliable. Has anyone figured a way of getting meds for longer than 3 months? I'm in UK now, but will be sailing from New Zealand in 3 wks towards Vanuatu or somewhere...I've seen internet pharmacies but I'm rather nervous. Cost is also a factor as my budget is a bit small!
in the uk if you are normally resident,you can set up a repeat perscription with the pharmacy and doctor,and order your repeats online,then have a family member or friend pick them up and send them to you,but you may find after paying your prescrition charge and postage it is cheaper to get your meds locally.

port vila,vanuatu has fairly good chemists resupplyed regularly from aus and nz.
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Old 22-06-2014, 10:26   #6
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

Federal Express them from home to your next port of call.
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Old 23-06-2014, 14:08   #7
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

drugstore@vanuatu.com.vu
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Old 23-06-2014, 14:13   #8
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

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It took some doing, but I managed to talk the doctor into getting 6 months, so keep working on them...maybe they can find a way.
Strange ,here its no problem, even going to the continent for a few months , the doc will prescribe 3-6 months no issue, ( its my wife that takes them) but its fairly straightforward stuff, ( statins and blood stuff). The NHS just gave her 6 months drugs for 28 quid in London recently.!

Transatlantic trips I had 3 months of lots of drugs prescribed, Tramadol etc

Dave
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Old 23-06-2014, 17:08   #9
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

martienssen,

There are pharmacies and doctors in Vanuatu, if you are unable to persuade your own doc to give you scrip for 6 months. One of the pharmacies is run by a fellow from NZ.

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Old 23-06-2014, 19:42   #10
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

I do not know about your home country and options but in the US it's common to use a forwarding service. The most popular is St. Brendan's Isle. I would think there are similar in most countries. That way you could get refills, have them sent to that address (often use as your official address) and they forward them to you wherever you are. Obviously a family member or friend could do the same. It's just they may not be familiar with the logistics or paperwork of each country.
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Old 23-06-2014, 20:38   #11
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

Short-term fix: Get your doctor to double your prescription strength. Then take half your pills each day.

Long-term fix: Start skipping one dose per week, but always renew your prescription on schedule. Continue until you have a month or two or three of "extra".
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Old 23-06-2014, 20:46   #12
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

Get the doc to double the dose & get a 2-dollar pill splitter. This also reduces the cost a bunch. Get friendly with the doctor. They will usually write you a bigger quantity if they understand the situation.
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Old 24-06-2014, 14:59   #13
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Thumbs up Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 months

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoTies View Post
drugstore@vanuatu.com.vu
Branches in Port Vila and Santo
many thanks
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Old 24-06-2014, 15:32   #14
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

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Get the doc to double the dose & get a 2-dollar pill splitter. This also reduces the cost a bunch. Get friendly with the doctor. They will usually write you a bigger quantity if they understand the situation.
Be careful they are pills that can safely be split. There are many that can not, primarily bi-level and time release.
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Old 24-06-2014, 16:10   #15
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Re: Prescriptions for more than 3 Months

We had no problems with my wife's meds when we headed out. Her doctor was willing to prescribe six months worth (the amount of time we were to be gone), and the insurance company approved payment once they were informed that we would be cruising outside the country for that period. We vac-sealed them against the humidity and kept them in a dark place in the boat.

When we moved to Nevis in the eastern Caribbean full-time, the mail-order Rx provider's procedures didn't allow shipping the mail-order prescriptions out of the country, so we had them shipped to St Brendan's Isle mail forwarding service, who then sent them to us in Nevis.
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