Medical Device Awareness Card Now Available
Medical Device Awareness Card Now Available
The new Medical Device Awareness Card is now available. It covers both Insulin Pumps and Continuous Glucose Monitoring systems (CGMs) and is sponsored by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Airport Operators Association (AOA).
Due to potential damage, insulin pump and CGM manufacturers advise that the medical devices should not be exposed to x-ray screening and full-body airport scanners. (See below) Regulations allow passengers with these medical devices to ask for an alternative security screening process.
Despite the protocols in place, there have been many negative experiences at airport security resulting in a global campaign and now the issue of the Medical Device Awareness Card. The card provides information for both the Security Officer and the passenger as follows:
Medical Device Awareness Card: Security Officer
- Passengers with a medical device such as an insulin pump or Continuous Glucose Monitoring system (CGMs) should not be screened by a security scanner; if they opt out of this, they must be offered an alternative screening method.
- Passengers must never be asked to remove a medical device from their body for screening.
- Medical devices (including spare devices) should not go through x-ray machines. Alternative screening processes can be undertaken such as hand search, supported by ETD.
Medical Device Awareness Card: Passenger
- Don’t forget to bring your medical evidence (e.g. letter from a medical practitioner) to confirm your medical device such as an insulin pump or Continuous Glucose Monitoring system (CGMs). Have this ready to show the Security Officer, along with this card.
- Make the airport Security Officer aware of the device, and exactly what it is and where it is located.
- If you are carrying a spare medical device, remove it from your cabin bag before the x-ray and let the Security Officer know.
- And do contact the airport if you have any concerns or queries before you travel: note that screening equipment and processes may differ from airport to airport.
- Please check with your return airport (if outside the UK) on their arrangements for screening medical devices.
It is also recommended that passengers use the service that many UK airports offer of a discreet identifier (usually a ‘sunflower’ lanyard), for those who have a hidden or not so obvious medical condition or disability. Please see the Special Assistance counters at the airport.
If you have a poor experience at airport security, you can report this by emailing Rachel Humphrey at firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information: the airport name, date, approximate time, flight number and a description of what happened.
For more information visit:
Current statements from the major manufacturers
You can continue to wear your insulin pump or continuous glucose monitor (CGM) while going through common security systems such as an airport metal detector as it will not harm the device or trigger an alarm. Do not send the devices through the x-ray machine. You need to remove your insulin pump and CGM (sensor and transmitter) while going through an airport body scanner. If you do not wish to remove your devices, you may request an alternative pat-down screening process. Notify security screeners that you have diabetes, that you are wearing an insulin pump and are carrying supplies with you.
It is a good idea to contact the airport you will be travelling from for advice on the specific airport requirements for people with insulin pumps. Do not disconnect your pump for airport security. You can go through the walk-through scanner with your insulin pump, however should detach it to go through the full body scanner. Your insulin pump must not go through the luggage X-ray machine while running. If the airport requires the pump to go through the X-ray machine at any point, check the instructions for use.
Some airport full-body scanners include x-ray or millimetre radio-wave, which you cannot expose your System to. The effect of these scanners has not been evaluated and the exposure may damage the System or cause inaccurate results. To avoid removing your System, you may request another type of screening. If you do choose to go through a full-body scanner, you must remove your Sensor. The System can be exposed to common electrostatic (ESD) and electromagnetic interference (EMI), including airport metal detectors. You can keep your Reader on while going through these. You can safely use your System at all times while on an aircraft.