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TODAY'S QUESTION: Should prescriptions be required for products containing pseudophedrine?

Monday, April 25, 2011 | 11:24 a.m. CDT

The Missouri House Rules Committee endorsed a bill Friday that would require prescriptions for medications containing pseudoephedrine, a common ingredient in cold and allergy medicines that can also be used to make methamphetamine.

The federal Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act currently requires medicines with pseudoephedrine be kept behind pharmacy counters, limits the amount that can be purchased and requires sellers to keep logbooks of sales. Missouri also has a tracking system set up to prevent people from buying large quantities of the drugs at different stores.

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The Sikeston City Council passed a bill last April requiring prescriptions for products with pseudoephedrine and approved a bill this month readopting the existing requirement.

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association opposes prescriptions for these drugs on its website, saying prescription requirements would increase costs of the medicines, decrease the amount of time doctors could be spending with patients who “actually need a doctor’s attention” and require some states to have to pay additional Medicaid costs and lose sales tax revenues.

Gov. Jay Nixon and Attorney General Chris Koster have voiced their support for requiring prescriptions for these drugs.

The bill is unlikely to become law this year with just three weeks left in the legislative session.

Do you think prescriptions should be required for products with pseudoephedrine? Why or why not?


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