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Cold medicine bill headed for governor's desk

JACKSON — Mississippi is poised to become only the second state in the nation to require a doctor’s prescription for cold medicine containing pseudoephedrine, the main ingredient in the illicit drug methamphetamine.

The Senate yesterday sent to the governor a bill that supporters say is designed to curtail the state’s escalating meth activity. The House earlier passed the bill. Gov. Haley Barbour has said he supports the legislation.

Oregon passed a similar law in 2006.

Drug manufacturers had been pushing lawmakers to pass a real-time tracking system instead of the prescription bill. Representatives of the industry have said the prescription bill will likely lead to meth addicts and cooks crossing state lines to get the drug.

Barbour said, “I commend the Mississippi Legislature for its swift action to address the methamphetamine problem in this state. I look forward to signing House Bill 512, which will make it more difficult to obtain the ingredients for this drug that tears families apart and harms many of our communities.”

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