The latest in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette series is an article entitled Enacted legislation, everyday lives Pharmacist hopes to counter methamphetamine abuse.
The law is SEA 444. The law:
Prohibits a retailer from selling a drug containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine: (1) to a person less than 18 years of age; and (2) in a quantity greater than three grams in one transaction. Requires a retailer to store drugs containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine: (1) behind a counter or in a locked case that makes the drugs unavailable to customers without the assistance of a store employee; or (2) directly in front of the pharmacy counter, in the line of sight of an employee behind the pharmacy counter, and in an area under constant video monitoring, if the retail establishment in which the drugs are sold is a pharmacy or contains a pharmacy that is open for business. Requires a retailer to record certain information concerning a person who purchases a drug containing ephedrine or pseudoephedrine by requiring the purchaser to present identification and record certain information in a log that may be made available to law enforcement officers in accordance with state or federal law.
The law is designed to keep drugs containing the precursors of methamphetamine out of the hands of folks operating meth labs.
The Journal Gazette interviews pharmacist W. Howard Bell. He has already moved his store’s stock of cold medicine out of his customer’s reach. Bell is of the opinion that it’s good to keep it out of the hands of the wrong people. He doesn’t seem to think this will be that big a problem for his small pharmacy. He says that the Wal-marts and the K-marts are where people would go to steal 15 boxes.
SEA 444 prohibits purchasing the cold medicine without showing a state or federal identification. A cold medicine purchaser has to complete a form indicating the person’s name, address, and driver’s license or other identification number. (So, if you’re homeless or don’t have your ID documents, prepare to endure the sniffles.)