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Pharma Ads Target Mo. Pseudoephedrine Bill

By Marshall Griffin, St. Louis Public Radio


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – A not-for-profit group that represents the pharmaceutical industry is running radio ads in Missouri to combat legislation that would require a doctor's prescription to buy certain cold medications.

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association produced the ads, which urge people to tell lawmakers to "keep government out of your medicine cabinet."

The bill in question would make it harder to purchase pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in the production of methamphetamine. The industry group is also sponsoring a database to track pseudoephedrine purchases in Missouri, and wants lawmakers to wait and see if that approach works first.

But the bill's sponsor, GOP House member Dave Schatz of Franklin County, says the database is not enough.

"If you look at the states that have tracking systems - Kentucky, Tennessee, Oklahoma, states surrounding us - their meth lab seizures have only continued to rise," says Schatz.

Schatz says making pseudoephedrine a prescription-only medicine is the only way to rid Missouri of meth. An industry spokesperson recently expressed concern that the proposal would drive pseudoephedrine prices up.


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