Traveling with Type 1 Diabetes

I currently live and work in the Philippines. Before moving here (from the USA) I was nervous about how living in a new country would affect my diabetes. It's hard to know if medical supplies are easily available, ect. I find it difficult to find information on life with diabetes in other countries. Perhaps this discussion group can contribute to information on life with diabetes in many different countries.

For starters, I've been contemplating missionary work in 3rd world countries. I've mostly been looking at Ghana or Nigeria. What are the chances an organization would accept a type 1 diabetic? Is it difficult to get supplies and keep them safe/cold?

Another question, does anyone know about any missionary jobs that involve helping diabetics in other countries? I'd love to be involved with that!

I do not have any knowledge of accessibility of insulin or supplies in the countries you seek to spend time in. However there is a way to keep your insulin cool with out the need for electricity if you find yourself in an area with no or unreliable electricity. Check out Frio. It is a reusable gel pack that will keep your meds at a stable temperature and just uses water to reactivate the packs. It comes in several sizes so you can mix and match depending on your needs.

I use it to keep my backup insulin cool in my locker at work, have used it on vacation when I had no fefrigeration and just soak the pack in water when I need it. It works on evaporative cooling so as long a s you have some water to wet it you are good.


Thanks so much for your response! I appreciate any information from fellow diabetics. I actually have a Frio that I use for traveling around the Philippines/Asia. I've never thought to use it for really long trips (like a year abroad), but I suppose that would work too. I just makes me nervous not having access to a fridge for so long. I think I need to loosen up a bit; I always have my supplies readily available nearby. lol.

Again, thanks!

I'm not sure if this will help but my daughter lived in middle-sized town in Madagascar. There were very few refrigerators in the town. When I visited her I kept my insulin in a refrigerator at the doctor's office. Then, when I left I left the extra insulin that I had taken to the Doctor. I'm sure it found good use.

Would you be in a town/country? That would make a difference. I was really shocked by the hygiene in this country. And the inconsistency of food deliveries. Some days there would be no milk or something else but there were always wonderful vegetables and rice. But I guess you know 3rd world countries. I could never ship her anything because it would be stolen.

I'm sorry I can't tell you anything about the countries you are talking about but they seem to me not to be the most impoverished. There are lots of people from Nigeria in France. Good luck