Stranded Brit running out of diabetes medication after Thomas Cook collapse

Benedict Jephcote
Tue, 24 Sep 2019
Stranded Brit running out of diabetes medication after Thomas Cook collapse
A British woman with diabetes is stranded abroad and running out of diabetes medication after travel company Thomas Cook ceased trading.

Natalie Shaw, 48, has been holidaying in Crete with her husband Robert for the past week, but they are now unsure how or when they will be returning to their Exmouth home.

Thomas Cook, which has been in business for 178 years, ceased trading on Monday after the government decided not to bail the company out.

This has affected thousands of holiday makers who have experienced cancelled flights, leaving them unable to get home to the UK.

Speaking to the Exmouth Journal, Natalie said: "My main worry is that I have diabetes and only have three days-worth of medication.

"We could be stuck in worse places. I have a flight phobia and this holiday was supposed to be to get me over that and now I don't know if me and husband will be going home on the same flight.

"We are parked at Bristol, but we are not even sure we will get a flight to Bristol."

As Crete is part of the EU, Natalie should be able to access the medication she needs. While the UK is part of the EU, if Natalie has a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), she should be able to apply to have the cost of any medication, that she may need to obtain, refunded.

While Natalie should be able to get the medication she needs, it is a worrying position to be in and there may be other customers with diabetes that are also concerned about when they will get back home.

Longer delays with flights home can happen from time to time. Packing extra medication and supplies can help to reduce the stress if flights home become problematic.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is helping to fly around 150,000 tourists home. Natalie is still waiting to hear when they will be able to go home.

Thomas Cook's chief executive Peter Fankhauser has since apologised to everyone who has been impacted by the collapse of the company.

He said: "Despite huge efforts over a number of months and further intense negotiations in recent days, we have not been able to secure a deal to save our business.

"I know that this outcome will be devastating to many people and will cause a lot of anxiety, stress and disruption.

"I would like to apologise to our millions of customers, and thousands of employees, suppliers and partners who have supported us for many years."

Photo credit: Exmouth Journal
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