shipping meds to Peru?

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emilirene
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shipping meds to Peru?

Postby emilirene » Sat May 31, 2014 12:35 pm

Hi,
My family and I are moving to Lima for one year, we arrive in July. I am frantically trying to get all the loose ends tied up and arrangements made. I have a million little questions, but here are the most pressing one:
Is there any problem with a family member mailing a medication down to us in Peru? It is an extremely expensive psoriasis medicine that comes in syringes. I'm assuming we can't buy it affordably in Peru, and our insurance is covering it here, so shipping it is probably our most affordable option. The medication is not abusable, not a narcotic or anything like that. But do packages get inspected or anything like that? Could it get stopped somewhere along the line?
If we do ship it - is USPS the best way to go? Or UPS or something like that? We would want it shipped at a pretty fast rate, too - any advice on that?

Thank you!


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sunflower
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby sunflower » Sun Jun 01, 2014 11:04 am

All medication "imported" to Peru has to be registered with the Ministerio de Salud. That's at least what the law says. Exception: tourists can bring medication for their personal use into the country.

Stay away from UPS, DHL, Fedex; they will give you trouble.

If you are only coming to Peru for one year, personally I would bring the amount of medication I need for this time with me. If you don't want to do this, your best option is shipping it with the normal postal service as registered letter. But be aware that mail might be opened and the medication not allowed into the country. On the other hand my mum regularly sends me letters that contain medication and until now I personally never had a problem.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby cjp » Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:26 pm

I would not ship it, you are then at the mercy of Customs, SERPOST, or whoever.

If you currently get it through insurance in the US and you are keeping the insurance, you may want to have it shipped to a friend or family member. They can hand-carry it when they visit you or you can pick it up from them when you are back in the US. Although it sounds expensive, you will not lose it this way and it may be cheaper than buying it in Peru. Prices of drugs in Peru are listed on this web site:

http://observatorio.digemid.minsa.gob.pe/#

My family members or I have never had a problem with Customs at the airport when bringing in small quantities of injectable medication. They must see it on the x-rays, but they have never asked for a prescription or doctor's note or anything like that.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby DC_20833 » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:14 am

Peru seems to be fair regarding meds. I brought some Diovan non generic with me to the States and declared it. They took it from me claiming only drugs cannot be imported to the US for safety reasons. That is a crock of you know what it for the protection of the overpriced US Drug Industry.

Whoever, said that the Ministry Salud has to approve any drug brought into Peru is correct but the enforcement seems to be lax for personal consumption if it is with you when you arrive. The OP should also check with their doctor to see if the drug has any narcotic substance in it. Many drugs today are combinations of several drugs. I would also carry a Doctors Prescription for the drug in question.

I know somebody who works with International Missions Board (IMB) and their Missionary Teams bring lots of drugs for use in the Provinces and they have get several approvals and then forward the approved paperwork to Customs and then meet the teams at the Airport that bring the drugs in and everything is carefully checked.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby jpanciera » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:56 pm

This concerns me. I was totally planning on having my meds mailed to me monthly from the States. My insurance company does not cover 3 months worth at a time. What should I do? Arriving In September and staying in for at least 3 months.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby MarcoPE » Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:54 am

emilirene wrote:I'm assuming we can't buy it affordably in Peru


You know what they say when we assume :wink: What I would do is call a pharmacy (a more reputable one) here in Peru and ask about the med, see if it is available and how much it costs, as many medications here are significantly cheaper than in the US and it may work out to be less expensive to get them here if you account for shipping costs and the hassle.

I would call both pharmacies below with the medication's name (in Spanish). Be sure to ask for both cost of brand name and generic (if available):

FASA: http://www.fasa.com.pe/

MiFarma: http://www.mifarma.com.pe/

Good luck!
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby sunflower » Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:24 am

Yes very good idea.

I personally would add Inkafarma http://www.inkafarma.com.pe/ to your list. They were the only ones answering my mail when I was looking for a special medication.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby teamoperu » Wed Jun 04, 2014 11:00 am

jpanciera wrote:This concerns me. I was totally planning on having my meds mailed to me monthly from the States. My insurance company does not cover 3 months worth at a time. What should I do? Arriving In September and staying in for at least 3 months.


Might call your insurance company. They can make exceptions to the 100 day rule, mine did.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby tomsax » Wed Jun 04, 2014 4:06 pm

I can confirm that sending medicaiton by regular post is prone to failure. I have tried on three occasions to send pills to my father in law and none has arrived. My only success has been by sending with friends going over.

I will try again using DHL or similar with recorded delivery/tracking but I imagine there willl be importation taxes to pay Good luck looking for a solution. Let us know if you find one.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby emilirene » Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:08 am

Thanks all for the tips. I'm not sure we have a viable option besides the mail. The medication is - according to the pricing website the second responder recommended - over $1k/month (US dollars). That is a quarter of the cost of it here in the US, but still way outside our price range of course. But we are getting it nearly free through insurance here. We will be in Peru 6 months for our first stint, and don't have any family coming in that time.
I guess we'll just have to ship it in small batches and cross our fingers :(
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby cjp » Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:33 am

emilirene wrote:I guess we'll just have to ship it in small batches and cross our fingers :(


You might want to do a test run first with something else - a bottle of aspirin for example. I foresee two problems with shipping medication. The first is the general hassle of shipping something to Peru from another country. The second is that it is an expensive medication.

Recently a family member shipped (via FedEX) a $32 Lego toy to my son, as a test to see how shipping would go. Here is what happened:

- Day 1, package dropped off at FedEX location in the US, shipped using International Priority

- Day 2, I received an email from the local FedEX saying that the package was in Customs and I needed to provide a copy of the original sales slip (so they could assess the value)

- I spent the next day or so getting a copy of the original receipt and filling out other Customs forms.

- Day 9, I was informed by the local FedEX that I would have to pay $45 to get it out of Customs and delivered to my office

- Day 11, I made the bank transfer and provided proof of payment to local FedEX

- Day 13 - package was delivered

The end result is that it took almost 2 weeks and an additional $45 to get a $32 Lego toy. Part of the delay was on my end because it wasn't urgent - I probably could have gotten it through more quickly. I'm sure others here have similar horror stories. I can only imagine that the process for receiving an expensive medication would involve even more steps.

If your medication is refrigerated, your situation is worse because you cannot wait several days. I suggest you talk with the local delivery service (FedEX, UPS, DHL, whoever) to find out what you need to do beforehand to expedite the process with Customs. Don't trust what the people in the US may tell you, make sure you talk to someone down here. And even then, you can't trust them because rules and regulations always change. I think you would probably need some kind of invoice with the value of the medication and some type of approval from the Peruvian authorities to import it into Peru.

Another option is to use an on-board courier service that accepts medications. But if you are going to pay those prices, you might as well travel yourself or buy a ticket for a friend or relative.
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Re: shipping meds to Peru?

Postby Niko » Mon Jun 09, 2014 7:30 pm

I had the same experience when I received a shipment by Fedex. The 45$ are the local Fedex fee for custom clearance which I think is abusive because the goods where free of duty (under 200$ value). The standard mail (Serpost) does not charge this fee and sometimes it does not take much longer than fedex to receive the shipment.

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