WASHINGTON — The Consumer Healthcare Products Association on Friday pledged its support behind the introduction of legislation by Rep. Paul Harris, R-Wash., that would prohibit pharmacies or retail distributors from selling over-the-counter cough medicines containing dextromethorphan to those younger than 18 years without a prescription. CHPA says the bill, H.B. 2163, is a step toward preventing teen abuse of the medicines containing DXM.
“The manufacturers of over-the-counter medicines are grateful to Rep. Harris for his leadership on this issue,” stated Carlos Gutierrez, CHPA’s senior director and head of state government affairs. “The passage of similar legislation in California and New York indicate the growing support in our country for this measure, which gives parents a tool to prevent their teens from abusing cough medicine. While there is no one solution to this problem, restricting access is an important part of prevention along with encouraging parents to talk to their teens about the risks and to safeguard the medicines in their home.”
The 2013 Monitoring the Future survey found that 4% of teens abuse medicines containing DXM to get high.
CHPA also supports a national age-18 sales restriction introduced in the U.S. Senate, the Preventing Abuse of Cough Treatments (PACT) Act of 2013 (S. 644).