New Market Impact Study on Prescription Requirement for Pseudoephedrine Underscores Call for Alternative Solutions

Avalere Health Determines Prescription Legislation Will Significantly Increase Cost of Healthcare

Washington, D.C. (May 1, 2014) – The Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) today highlighted a new market-impact study conducted by Avalere Health and supported by CHPA. The study examined the potential market impacts of a prescription-only policy for cold and allergy medicines containing pseudoephedrine (PSE) compared to the implementation of real-time, stop-sale technology to block illegal sales of such medicines.

Key findings from the study (Courtesy of Avalere Health)

  • In just one year, a prescription-only policy would result in 1,229,039 new physician visits for consumers across the country.
  • These new physician visits would increase consumer costs by as much as $42.7 million in the first year as a result of the associated out-of-pocket payments.
  • Public and private payers would spend an additional $198.6 million on combined costs associated with these new provider visits and coverage of PSE products.
  • State taxes on non-prescription medications would drop, and states would lose tax revenues of $325.8 million over 10 years while simultaneously facing increased costs from Medicaid beneficiaries and in some cases health insurance exchange members.

“This year’s Avalere study confirms and strengthens our belief that the best way to address domestic methamphetamine production is through balanced legislation at the state level,” said Scott Melville, president and chief executive officer of CHPA. “Prescription requirements on these popular medicines place substantial burdens on law-abiding citizens while failing to address to the root sources of meth crime, such as Mexican-made meth and addiction.”

“CHPA has long promoted policies that aim to stop the illegal sale of PSE-containing medicines by targeting criminals instead of law-abiding citizens,” Melville continued. “Balanced programs such as real-time, stop-sale technology and drug-offender block lists have already demonstrated quantifiable success against meth criminals in a number of key states.  Going forward, we will continue to work with law enforcement officials and policymakers across the country to develop and implement more effective solutions that punish criminals,not law-abiding citizens who depend on these cold and allergy medicines for relief.”

Editor’s note: A copy of the Avalere report, “Managing Access to Pseudoephedrine” can be found online.

Contact: Elizabeth Funderburk 202.429.9260 (w) or 202.256.5677 (m)

The Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) is the 133-year-old trade association representing the leading manufacturers and marketers of over-the-counter (OTC) medicines and dietary supplements. Every dollar spent by consumers on OTC medicines saves the U.S. healthcare system $6-$7, contributing a total of $102 billion in savings each year. CHPA is committed to promoting the increasingly vital role of over-the-counter medicines and dietary supplements in America’s healthcare system through science, education, and advocacy.