Making meth just got a lot harder, thanks to a new tracking system. Pharmacies and supermarkets across the US are being equipped with a real-time tracking system that registers sales of products with pseudoephedrine,ephedrine, and phenyloproanolamine- key ingredients for making illegal meth commonly found in over-the-counter cold and allergy medications.
Next time you or a loved one catches a cold, chances are you will head to the local drug store and purchase an over-the-counter (OTC) medication to relieve the symptoms. If your local market has the real-time meth tracking system installed, the tracking system will scan a picture of your I.D. and record the amount of drugs bought. It also can show the cashier if you have exceeded the amount you are legally allowed to buy. The cashier can then refuse to sell to a customer that has exceeded his or her limit.
Hopefully the new tracking system will help stop meth makers from buying big quantities of the products while allowing legitimate access to cold, flu, and allergy products.
In recent years several states have adopted sales limits for pseudoephedrine. The next challenge for law enforcement was trying to stop people going from one store to the next and buying their limit of pseudoephedrine at each store. Law enforcement agents are hopeful the new tracking system will be able to seriously impair their ability to do that.
Kate Gainer, vice president of professional affairs with the Iowa Pharmacy Association, said the tracking system is something the organization supports. She said the organization believes using a tracking system is a better solution than requiring a prescription to obtain pseudoephedrine products.