Letter: Requiring a prescription for pseudoephedrine will not reduce meth problem
Our legislators oftentimes are the unsung heroes of our state, working long hours to make sure our schools are funded and our street lights stay on. Unfortunately, on occasion, they get it wrong and propose policies that would inevitably end up burdening honest citizens.
A recent example of this involves the Indiana Coalition Against Meth Making Meds. Indiana is plagued by meth. Pseudoephedrine (PSE), an ingredient used to make meth, is found in FDA-approved cold and allergy medication. So ICAMMM wants to require prescriptions for PSE medication. That seems sensible enough, that is if one knew nothing about the realities of meth.
Up to 90 percent of meth in this country is from Mexico. A comprehensive study by Alex Brill, head of Matrix Global Advisors, shows that’s why the only two states with PSE prescription laws, Oregon and Mississippi, haven’t seen a downturn in meth addiction. However, states that block known meth and drug criminals from purchasing PSE medications have seen drastic reductions in domestically produced meth. In fact, Oklahoma and Alabama have reduced meth lab incidents by over 80 percent by doing just that. We should be considering that approach, not additional regulation that punishes law-abiding citizens with expensive co-pays and visits to the doctor’s office.
Mark Merkle and Sue Stemen