Grey Nomads urged to plan ahead before travelling north

4 May 2017

Older Australians heading north to escape winter’s chills have been urged to pack their medications along with their swimming costumes and beach towels to avoid a trip to hospital.

grey nomads swimming in a tropical rock pool

People can become complacent when they are relaxed and on holiday, which can sometimes lead to them forgetting their regular medicines and putting their health at risk. Before leaving, travellers should meet with their GPs for a thorough health check and to discuss any health issues that may impact on their travel plans.

It is also important to check medication for storage instructions, as the temperature inside a van or car in warm weather may rise beyond the recommended levels for safe storage.

By taking some simple steps before leaving home, people could help prevent any health-related interruptions to their holiday while also ensuring they don’t place increased pressure on remote, smaller health services.

Tips for older travellers include:

  • remember to pack medications and repeat scripts
  • ensure medications are stored properly, so their efficacy is maintained
  • ensure scripts are filled ahead of time, to avoid running out of medication
  • keep doctor, pharmacy, family and emergency numbers handy
  • put in place a medication reminder system to ensure medications are taken on time (this could include setting an alarm)
  • pack a first aid kit to use to mange small cuts and abrasions
  • seek advice regarding travel insurance and ambulance cover before leaving.