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Indiana House Panel Approves Pseudoephedrine Bill

An Indiana House committee has approved a bill that would require computerized tracking of cold medications used in making methamphetamine.The House Public Health Committee voted 8-2 to advance the measure to the full House.The system, paid for by the health care products industry, is already used in ten other states, including Kentucky. It would limit the amount of those medicines that could be bought in a 30-day period. Gary Ashenfelter with the Indiana DEA says the industry has the right intentions, but the system wouldn’t be as effective as requiring a prescription for the products and it basically duplicates a state police tracking system already in place."You’re buying a spare tire for a car that’s already going down the road," he told the panel. But Mandy Hagan with the Consumer Health Care Product Association says the industry is building a regional tracking network of states that will be more effective."The manufacturers of pseudoephedrine products don’t want our products being diverted to make meth and we feel this what we can do to try an be a part of the solution," Hagan said. The bill has already cleared the Senate. Measures that would require a prescription for those products have also been introduced in the General Assembly. (Information for this story also came from the Associated Press)

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.