Medical Assistance

Medical Clearance

If you are ill or injured and are travelling or returning home for treatment or rehabilitation, a medical clearance may be required. A medical clearance helps Qantas to ensure your comfort, health and safety and facilitates the provision of any specialised equipment or assistance that may be necessary.

When is a medical clearance required?

  • If you have a medical condition that meets the criteria listed in detail in the Travel Clearance Form.
  • If you or your doctor are unsure about your fitness to travel.
  • If you require supplemental therapeutic oxygen.
  • If you require medical equipment in flight e.g. stretcher, humidicrib, ventilators, defibrillators, oxygen concentrators etc.

Note: Onboard use of Continuous Positive Airways Pressure (CPAP) devices (both battery operated and electric) requires Qantas clearance, however it does not require clearance from a medical practitioner. Simply download and complete the CPAP Travel Clearance form and fax to +61 (2) 9490 1830 and we'll review and make the necessary arrangements. This form also lists the current CPAP devices authorised for use on Qantas aircraft.

Travel Clearance Form

If medical clearance is required, your medical practitioner will need to complete a Travel Clearance Form. Once completed, the form should be faxed to Qantas Special Handling on +61 (2) 9490 1830 for assessment in consultation with Qantas Medical Services, up to 72 hours before travel.

If you are unable to travel by yourself, you may be entitled to discounted travel for yourself and your carer. For more information refer to Travel with an Escort or Carer.

Medical Equipment

If you need to use Medical Support Equipment on board you must obtain medical clearance* by using our Travel Clearance Form. Your equipment must be authorised as safe for use on Qantas aircraft. More information on Qantas authorised medical equipment can be obtained from the medical support equipment list. No other equipment can be accepted. Medical equipment may only be used on Qantas domestic services as battery operated.

* Note: Onboard use of Continuous Positive Airways Pressure (CPAP) devices (both battery operated and electric) requires Qantas clearance, however it does not require clearance from a medical practitioner. Simply download and complete the CPAP Travel Clearance form and fax to +61 (2) 9490 1830 and we'll review and make the necessary arrangements. This form also lists the current CPAP devices authorised for use on Qantas aircraft.

Strict safety rules govern the operation of electronic equipment on board aircraft. Hearing aids and heart pacemakers are allowed.

Other important points are:

  • Inspection prior to your flight: Medical equipment to be used on board must be made available for inspection a few hours before departure and approved for use on board. Normal carry on baggage regulations apply to any medical support equipment to be used in flight.
  • Notice periods: Qantas needs time to process clearances and make arrangement for special equipment. You must inform Qantas and provide any clearances for travel up to 72 hours before your intended travel.
  • Supply of equipment: You must supply all medical equipment that you require to travel safely. Remember to bring any medication that may be needed in your carry on baggage.
  • Additional Equipment: Passengers requiring Medical and Mobility Equipment for their own use may also check in medical/life dependant equipment and two pieces of mobility equipment without additional cost. Visit our Mobility Assistance page for further information on travelling with assistive devices.

If any of the above requirements (including stipulated time frames) have not been met by you, Qantas reserves the right to deny uplift or carriage on the relevant flight until all Qantas policy requirements have been met.

Qantas will not accept liability or responsibility for any costs associated with denial of carriage, for example, hotel or hospital costs. However, you and any accompanying passengers will be able to use any unused portions of your ticket on a future date, subject to availability, and only once all policy requirements have been met.

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Medications

If you are taking medication and want to take it with you, you may need to carry a medical certificate. Make sure that you check the consulate website of the countries you are visiting before you go and carry all medication in your carry on baggage.

You should follow these instructions for taking medication:

  • Contact the embassy of the country/countries you are visiting to ensure the medication is legal in that country;
  • Carry or enclose with the medication a letter form your doctor, with details of the medication, how much you will be taking with you, and stating that the medication is for your personal use;
  • Leave the medication in the original packaging so it is clearly labelled identifying the medication, manufacturer's name or pharmaceutical label, along with your name and dosage.

You should note that it is illegal to take Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) subsidised medication out of Australia for reasons other than for personal use. For more information visit the Medicare Australia website.

Generally, a visitor to Australia may bring up to 3 months supply of their prescribed medication without the need for an import approval or permit. However, some medications are subject to permits or import licence approval. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) issues import approvals to Australia for drugs which require a permit or import licence or for medication exceeding 3 months supply.

Insulin on board

Qantas is not able to refrigerate insulin or other drugs on board. If your medication requires refrigeration you can carry on board a small cooler. The cabin crew can replenish the cooler with ice as required.

Allergies/Anaphylaxis

Because of the wide variety of possible allergens to which a customer may be sensitive, and the fact that other Qantas customers may bring allergens with them, Qantas cannot guarantee an allergy free environment onboard or in our lounges. For this reason, we recommend that you carry any allergy medication you may need with you, including adrenalin auto injectors, in the cabin of the aircraft, keep them within easy reach and be ready to administer the medication if necessary. See the Inflight Assistance page for more information about food allergies and the Qantas Peanut Policy.

Hypodermic Needles

If you are carrying hypodermic needles you will need to declare them at the screening point. Under Australian law (and in accordance with international practices) hypodermic needles are classified as prohibited items within an aircraft cabin unless you can demonstrate a bona fide need to have them in your possession. You are therefore required to carry documentation and identification to confirm that the needles are required for a medical condition.

Qantas allows you to carry needles on board to cover the period from initial uplift and any oncarriage until you are reunited with your checked baggage. Qantas does not object to the carriage of a small additional supply of needles within the cabin as a contingency for any unforeseen events. Needle supplies in excess of your inflight travel requirements should be carried within your checked baggage where there is no restriction on the number of hypodermic needles you may carry.

Note: Not all airport screening points are managed by Qantas and screening authorities may have policies that differ from this policy. Qantas cannot accept any responsibility whatsoever in circumstances where screening authorities confiscate needle supplies in excess of what they consider appropriate for travel. It is recommended that when your travel includes overseas locations you contact the relevant authorities to confirm any carriage restrictions.

Visit the Australian Diabetes Council website for more information about travelling with Diabetes.

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Carriage of Medical Oxygen Cylinders (5kg gross)

Qantas allows the carriage of medical oxygen cylinders (5kg gross) in carry-on baggage only.

Operator approval is required and can be obtained by emailing dg@qantas.com.au with the following information:

  • passenger's full name;
  • confirmation each cylinder does not exceed 5kg gross
  • confirmation the valve/regulator is fully protected.

Note: A Medical Clearance must still be provided to Qantas Special Handling (contact +61 2 8222 2651).

Visit our Dangerous Goods page for important information on travelling with oxygen cylinders.

Communicable Disease and Infection

Where Qantas has made an individual assessment of you and reasonably concluded that you pose a direct threat, that is a significant risk to the health or safety of passengers or crew if you were to travel, you may not be accepted for air travel unless or until the risk has been eliminated.

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

Acceptance for travel does not require medical clearance when you advise Qantas you have a history of DVT that has been appropriately medically managed. Refer to your health inflight and to the Travel Clearance Form.
for more information.

Scuba Diving & Decompression Sickness

To minimise the risk of decompression sickness, often known as "the bends", if you who have been scuba diving within 24 hours of your flight departure you will not be permitted to travel.

If you have suffered decompression sickness prior to travel you will require medical clearance for travel commencing within 10 days of completing treatment.

Pregnancy

Flights 4 hours duration or greater

For routine pregnancies, you can travel up to the end of the 36th week for single pregnancies and the end of the 32nd week for multiple pregnancies (e.g. twins).

Medical clearance is required if you are having complications with your pregnancy (that is, if the pregnancy is not routine).

Flights less than 4 hours duration

For routine pregnancies, you can travel up to the end of the 40th week for single pregnancies and the end of the 36th week for multiple pregnancies.

Medical clearance is required if you are having complications with your pregnancy and it is not a routine pregnancy.

Medical Certification

After 28 weeks, you need to carry a certificate or letter from a registered medical practitioner or registered midwife confirming:

  • the estimated date of delivery;
  • whether it is a single or multiple pregnancy;
  • that the pregnancy is a routine pregnancy and that there are no complications with the pregnancy.

The certificate or letter must be available on request and be carried with you at the airport and during the flight in your cabin baggage.

Medical Clearance

Medical clearance is required if the pregnancy is not routine and you are experiencing any complications with your pregnancy.

After Delivery

Medical clearance is required if you are travelling within 7 days of your delivery date. Infants cannot travel for 48 hours after delivery and need Medical clearance to travel between 3 and 7 days after delivery.

Note: We do not represent that travel is safe for you at any particular point during your pregnancy. You must seek advice from your own medical practitioner prior to your flight. The periods referred to above are only our minimum requirements.

Country Specific Requirements for Pregnant Passengers

Some countries place limitations on the entry of non-national pregnant women. It is best to check with the local consulate to confirm their country specific requirements.

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