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What Medications Can I Take While Flying?

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Source: AFA

Date: Mar 22, 2019

Source: Elines

This is a commonly asked question by Flight Attendants. As Safety Professionals, the question itself indicates that, as Flight Attendants, we are aware of drug and alcohol testing requirements and we recognize the link between the use of medications and fitness for duty. There are a vast number of new medications that enter the marketplace on a continuous basis. For Flight Attendants, this could also include non-domestic market streams. Of the most recent changes in some locations is the availability of medical marijuana and the recent introduction of non-regulated CBD oils. Refer to our article on the dangers of CBD oilsand the potential adverse impact on your continued employment.

Keep in mind the following:

  • Even though a physician may recommend medical marijuana and even if your state has authorized the use of recreational and/or medical marijuana, you are in a FEDERALLY designated safety sensitive position.  Federal regulation dictates that a marijuana test positive is still a violation regardless even if your physician or your state says it is “ok” to use it. 
  • Avoid using OTC medications/herbal supplements purchased overseas. Specifically avoid using CBD oil purchased in the US or overseas.  Because of the lack of regulatory oversight of these products, the label may be incorrect and/or incomplete. The ingredients could contain substances that would cause you to test positive for a controlled substance.

Our MEC Employee Assistance/Professional Standards Committee has put together information from a number of resources to assist you in understanding the ramifications of the use of certain medications including over the counter medications.  The article is available on the MEC website at the following location.

If you have questions, it’s better to ask before using any medication when you expect to be on duty.  Contact your Local Council EAP Committee volunteers if you have questions.

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