Senate judiciary passes anti-‘smurfing’ legislation
WASHINGTON The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday passed the Methamphetamine Production Prevention Act, introduced by Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, Grassley’s office stated in an announcement.
The legislation addresses the practice of “smurfing,” where individuals looking to circumvent federal purchase restrictions on pseudoephedrine by the maximum quantity allowed across several retailers, by making it easier for pharmacy operators to use electronic logbook systems in their sale of PSE products.
“Smurfing pseudephedrine products from store to store in city to city is a growing problem, especially in communities that border another state,” stated Grassley. “When we wrote the Combat Meth Act, we didn’t account for these unscrupulous individuals who have learned that if they provide false information or visit multiple stores, tracking and arresting these people is more difficult. … An electronic logbook will be a tremendous asset for local law enforcement and businesses as they work to end the devastating impact of meth on our communities.”
Today’s legislation revises the technical logbook requirements found in the federal Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act, which passed in 2006. The Durbin-Grassley bill would change the Combat Meth Act to facilitate the use of electronic logbooks instead of written logbooks. For instance, the bill would revise the Act’s purchaser signature requirement to allow signatures to be obtained and stored on paper when the rest of the logbook information is captured electronically. This would make electronic logbook systems far more cost-effective without hurting law enforcement efforts. The bill would also allow for the use of bar code reader technology, and would revise the current requirement that each purchaser “enter” his or her name and address into a logbook so that retailers can type in the information electronically.
The legislation has been endorsed by numerous organizations, including the National Narcotics Officers’ Associations’ Coalition, the National Criminal Justice Association, the National District Attorneys Association, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association and the National Association of Chain Drug Stores.
Newspaper supplement highlights dangers of OTC drug abuse
WASHINGTON Three associations—the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America—on Wednesday introduced a new tool in the fight against medicine abuse, a 16-page newspaper supplement that aims to educate young people and parents about the dangers of abusing over-the-counter cough medicine and prescription drugs.
“Prescription medicines improve the lives of millions of patients every day,” stated Billy Tauzin, PhRMA’s president and chief executive officer. “The misuse of these medicines is tragic, and I believe we have an obligation to ensure that they are used properly. This supplement helps prevent medication abuse by actively reaching out to households and schools all across the country.”
“While national surveys show that overall illicit drug use among youth is on a downward trend, unfortunately the rates of over-the-counter and prescription drug abuse are holding steady.” commented Gen. Arthur Dean, CADCA chairman and chief executive officer. “CADCA and our partners share a common goal—to reduce the abuse of these medicines. … This project represents yet another ‘teachable moment’ that parents, community leaders and teachers can take to the youth in their lives make positive choices.”
The supplement, entitled “Stay Smart, Don’t Start: The Truth About Drugs and Alcohol,” was developed jointly by the three associations as part of its collective effort to raise awareness and fight medicine abuse.
The supplement contains information about the scope of the problem of youth alcohol, illicit drug, and medicine abuse; slang terms that teens use to describe OTC cough medicine and prescription drug abuse; and steps parents can take to prevent medicine abuse in their families. It also includes examples of what youth can do to get involved in drug prevention in their communities and helpful online resources for teens, parents, and teachers.
NTP studies find Chromax safe
PURCHASE, N.Y. Nutrition 21 on Thursday announced that study results released by the National Toxicology Program support the safety of short-term and long-term use of Chromium Picolinate.
“We are pleased with the conclusions of the NTP studies. Over the years Chromax chromium picolinate has proven to be an efficacious compound in assisting consumers to safely and proactively attain, and maintain, healthy blood glucose levels, carbohydrate metabolism, and body composition,” stated Michael Zeher, president and chief executive officer of Nutrition 21. “The results of these highly credible studies build upon the extensive database of safety data behind our products, and help provide retailers and consumers with the added confidence they need to initially buy our product and to become loyal repeat customers.”
Multiple safety studies were performed in animals, including a two-year study using daily doses of chromium picolinate equivalent to 50,000 times the common human dose found in supplements. Results of the studies can be viewed at the NTP website by clicking here.