To the editor:
I am writing to respond to the March 11 editorial, “Meth battle,” in the Journal-World. While we are all deeply concerned about methamphetamine production and abuse in Kansas, I believe a prescription requirement for medicines containing pseudoephedrine (PSE) is a misguided approach to the problem. While some believe that a prescription mandate would eradicate meth in Kansas, it’s simply not the case, and we need to look for alternatives that would preserve access to these important medicines for the families that depend on these medicines for relief. A prescription requirement would make life significantly more difficult for patients, especially allergy sufferers whose health care expenses would rise considerably if certain over-the-counter medicines became prescription only.
Doctors’ offices would be flooded with patients, and the truly sick would have to wait longer for an appointment. Moreover, delays in treatment that could trigger an avoidable asthma attack for some patients. This over-utilization of the health care delivery system would drive up costs for everyone paying into an insurance policy and for taxpayers who pay for Medicaid. The truth is that a prescription mandate is bad policy that hurts law-abiding Kansans. Our residents deserve balanced legislation to address meth production that targets criminals, not patients who depend on these medicines for relief from colds and allergy medicines.