‘Meds for meth’ bill is about to become law despite heavy lobbying campaign by pharmaceutical companies

The bill to limit purchases of a popular cold medicine used to make methamphetamine passed the General Assembly today and Gov. Steve Beshear said he would sign it.

The Senate voted 29-8 to approve changes the House made in Senate Bill 3, sponsored by Senate Majority Floor Leader Robert Stivers, R-Manchester, left. The bill would require a prescription to buy
more than 7.2 grams of pseudoephedrine in a month and 24 grams in a year. “A
generic box of pseudoephedrine with 48 pills, each with a 30-milligram
dosage, contains 1.44 grams of the medicine,” Jack Brammer of the Lexington Herald-Leader reports. “”Gel caps and liquid pseudoephedrine would be excluded from the limits in SB 3 because making meth from those forms is considered more difficult.”

The bill’s sponsors had wanted lower limits, and initially a prescription for any amount, “but they compromised
with opponents who worried about inconveniencing cold and allergy
sufferers,” Brammer notes. “The pharmaceutical industry has lobbied aggressively against the state requiring prescriptions for pseudoephedrine at any level,” ranking first in reported lobbying expenses without even counting its extensive advertising campaign. The industry apparently viewed Kentucky as a sort of firewall, the absence of which could make passage of similar “meds for meth” bills in other states. Only Oregon and Mississippi now have such legislation.

Previous Article
Next Article

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *