Individuals and Travellers

Bringing medicine into Australia

More Info

You do not need a permit to bring in most prescription medicines even if they contain a controlled substance because such imports are generally covered by a traveller exemption scheme.

Prescription medication can be imported under a traveller exemption, provided that:

  • you are arriving in Australia as a passenger on board a ship or aircraft
  • the medicine is carried in your accompanied baggage
  • you carry a letter or copy of your prescription (written in English) from your doctor to certify that the medicine has been prescribed to you to treat a medical condition
  • the quantity of the medicine does not exceed three months supply.

You should leave your medicine in its original packaging and declare it to the Australian Border Force when you arrive.

Examples

Prescription medicines such as morphine, oxycodone, methadone, methylphenidate, Adderall®, and benzodiazepines are all covered by the traveller exemption outlined above.

Exceptions

The following substance are not covered by the Traveller Exemption and require written permission from the Office of Drug Control when travelling to Australia:

  • Abortifacients (e.g. mifepristone - RU486)
  • Thalidomide
  • Yohimbe (Yohimbine)
  • Aminophenazone, amidopyrine, aminopyrine, dipyrone
  • Amygdalin/laetrile (also referred to as ‘Vitamin B17’)

The following items require permission from the Therapeutic Goods Administration when travelling to Australia:

  • Injections that contain material of human or animal origin (e.g. Hizentra®, Clexane®).
    • An Australian doctor must organise access for you through the TGA Special Access Scheme.
    • You do not need permission to bring insulin with you for personal use
  • Athletes and sporting staff travelling with hormones and peptides

People seeking permission for these items should contact the SAS (SAS@health.gov.au) for further instructions.

If you run out of medication, you will need to either see a doctor to discuss your options for procuring a further supply locally. If your medication is not currently registered for use in Australia (e.g. Adderall®,), then contact the Drug Control Section (DCS@health.gov.au) for further instructions.

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