Drug makers begin radio ad campaign to push their preferred pseudoephedrine bill

12/19/2011 07:12 AM

The industry group representing drug makers in Kentucky has begun a radio ad campaign in advance of the 2012 session urging public support for a bill that would require prescriptions for pseudoephedrine — but only for people with drug convictions.

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association launched the ad Monday morning and will run it across the state, including Louisville, Lexington and the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky market through the holidays. The group launched a radio ad campaign last year against efforts to put medicine containing pseudoephedrine behind the counter.

This spot is narrated by a woman who says that she “wasn’t happy” to find out that some lawmakers want to require prescriptions for anyone to buy cold medicine with pseudoephedrine — the key ingredient in the destructive and addictive drug, methamphetamine.

“Can we really afford to miss work or school to go to our doctor every time someone in our family needs Allegra D and Mucinex D?” she says. “The paper said politicians are pushing this because meth dealers use an ingredient in these medicines to help make their drugs.”

She goes on to say that she likes an approach pushed by Democratic Rep. Brent Yonts of Greenville that would “block sales to convicted meth offenders, but still allow law abiding citizens like me to purchase medicines my family depends on.”

Here’s the ad:

Other top officials, including House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, and Attorney General Jack Conway have said the approach of requiring prescriptions only for those with prior convictions isn’t enough.

They say that approach doesn’t do anything to stop “smurfing,” in which meth makers pay others to buy the maximum amount of pseudoephedrine for them.

Some lawmakers also say they’re exploring another approach that would require prescriptions for pseudoephedrine but would exempt the medicine in liquid gel cap form because meth makers have greater difficulty extracting the substance for use in meth.

Dealing with meth is expected to be one of the top issues in the 2012 General Assembly, which begins Jan. 3.


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