Here in Maine, people are used to long winters and then the grueling battle against springtime allergies. Allergy season is here and soon people will all be running to the drug store to stock up on their favorite brands of medicine.

As folks gear up for the long haul of this year’s allergy season, its important that people have access to over-the-counter medicines such as Claritin-D and Sudafed. Therefore, it is disconcerting to me that there has been a push recently to restrict access to these safe and effective OTC medicines by requiring a prescription. Those advocating for that policy think that by restricting access to those medicines, the tide of drug addiction in Maine can be stemmed, all because those medicine contain pseudoephedrine (PSE), which some criminals use to try to make meth.

Maine residents are hard-working people and they don’t have time to go to the doctor just to get a prescription for allergy medicine. Millions of people rely on over-the-counter allergy medicine today.

We need to shift away from ineffective policies that punish law-abiding patients like me, and we need to focus on helping the good people of Maine get through this extended allergy season.

Punish the real criminals some other way.

Nancy Sanborn, Pownal

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