Kohlmetz, Steen & Hanrahan, P.C. Portland Criminal Defense Attorneys
FREE Case Review email Location
Main Menu Office Location

Cold and Allergy Sufferers as Pawns in the Meth War

The "war on drugs" is sometimes fought on unlikely battlefields. This spring, legislators in several states are pushing controversial bills trying to restrict access to Sudafed and other popular decongestants.

Proposals under consideration in Tennessee, Missouri and elsewhere would require a doctor's prescription to obtain Sudafed and other cold-relief products. The fear is that when decongestants containing pseudoephedrine are purchased over the counter, they can too easily be used as ingredients in making methamphetamine.

No one denies that meth is a dangerous drug. But does it really make sense to crack down on cold and allergy sufferers by requiring a prescription for the decongestants they need?

Oregon is one of two states that already require a prescription in order to obtain pseudoephedrine-based products. Mississippi is the other. Oregon officials claim that meth lab seizures are down since the prescription requirement was put in place.

But surely there are less restrictive means for limiting access to pseudoephedrine. For example, instead of potentially criminalizing cold sufferers in search of relief, the state could improve its monitoring of interstate pseudoephedrine sales. This could be done using electronic databases.

Federal law also already requires pharmacies to observe certain restrictions. These include keeping products with pseudoephedrine behind sales counters, setting daily and monthly limits on sales to an individual consumer, and requiring pharmacists to keep sales logs.

If you have questions about Oregon's restrictions on over-the-counter sales of decongestants, contact us for more information.

Source: States Weigh Fighting Meth With Prescriptions," New York Times, 3-28-11

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Contact Us To Schedule A Free And Confidential Initial Consultation

We are committed to delivering the dedicated, intelligent advocacy and personal service you deserve to help you through a difficult situation. Call us today at 888-311-2016 or send us an email below.

Send Email

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Kohlmetz, Steen & Hanrahan, P.C.

741 Southwest Lincoln Street
Portland, OR 97201
Portland Law Office Map
In portland: 503-224-1104
Toll Free: 888-311-2016
Fax: 503-224-9417