WV Sen. Greg Tucker to introduce bill to require Rx for Pseudoep - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

WV Sen. Greg Tucker to introduce bill to require Rx for Pseudoephedrine

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Sen. Greg Tucker, D-Nicholas, announced Sept. 10 he plans to introduce a bill during the upcoming regular legislative session that would require a prescription for any drugs that could be used to manufacture methamphetamines.

Tucker said his bill would allow for over-the-counter sales of drugs with parts that cannot be broken down to make meth.

"Fruth Pharmacy, a West Virginia business, has said it will no longer sell products containing pseudoephedrine – known commonly as Sudafed – one of the principal components used in the illicit production of methamphetamines," Tucker said in a news release.

Tucker, who was first elected in 2010, was opposed to similar legislation that was proposed in 2011 because he believed at that time the requirements would only prevent legitimate users of Sudafed from having access to the drug.

Lynne Fruth, president and chairman of Fruth Pharmacy, hosted her own news conference recently, explaining how the chain would begin replacing products with Sudafed with a new, tamper-resistant product called Nexafed.

Tucker said the availability of Nexafed relieves some of his prior concerns.

said legislation enacted last year to require pseudoephedrine sales be reported to the West Virginia Board of Pharmacy in real time may have slowed the sale of the products, but it has not addressed the state's problem with methamphetamine.

"The number of arrests for manufacturing meth has doubled in the past year and continues to multiply," Tucker said. "There will still be problems, but prescription pseudoephedrine in West Virginia is a step we have to take to stop this plague and to win back our reputation as a state with reliable workers who want good jobs to provide for their families."

Tucker plans for his proposal to only allow products deemed by the West Virginia Board of Pharmacy "not feasible for the manufacture of methamphetamine" to be sold without a prescription.