CHPA Commends Congress on Passage of H.R. 5280, the Dextromethorphan Distribution Act

Vote Is Major Step in Curbing Substance Abuse Among Youth

Washington, D.C. (December 6, 2006)—Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 5280, the Dextromethorphan Distribution Act of 2006, which prohibits the distribution of raw dextromethorphan, an active ingredient commonly found in over-the-counter (OTC) cough medicines, to any person other than FDA-registered producers of drugs and devices. Following is a statement by Linda A. Suydam, D.P.A., president of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), on the bill’s passage:

"CHPA commends the U.S. House of Representatives on passing H.R. 5280, the Dextromethorphan Distribution Act. Today’s vote demonstrates the commitment of U.S. Representatives Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and Rick Larsen (D-Wash.)—who developed and introduced the legislation—and the bill’s 30 co-sponsors to protecting America’s youth from this serious threat. This bi-partisan legislation is vital to protecting America’s youth from unscrupulous online pushers who willingly provide kids with the raw form of dextromethorphan as a means to get high.

"One child who falls victim to these Internet predators is one child too many, and we urge the U.S. Senate to move swiftly to pass the bill. We then look forward to seeing the president sign this bill into law.

"While passage of this law is a major step forward in protecting teens from the dangers of raw, unfinished dextromethorphan abuse, we continue to work to help prevent the abuse of dextromethorphan in its finished form of OTC cough medicine. The makers of OTC medicines are spearheading a major campaign to raise awareness about dextromethorphan abuse, and we are working with the Partnership for a Drug-Free America and the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America in these efforts. Our campaign includes English- and Spanish-language educational resources for parents and community leaders, public service announcements and web sites for parent and teen audiences. We are committed to educating and empowering parents to take responsibility and action by informing their children of the dangers of abusing safe and legal household products."

Reporters interested in speaking with Dr. Suydam can contact Elizabeth Assey or Virginia Cox at 202.429.9260.

Note: All of CHPA’s initiatives to stop cough medicine abuse by teens are summarized online.

Contacts: Elizabeth Assey and Virginia Cox, 202.429.9260

CHPA is the 125-year-old trade association representing U.S. manufacturers and distributors of over-the-counter medicines and nutritional supplements.