Bill Post: My bill expanding access to medicine now in effect

By Hon. Bill Post,
Former Oregon State Representative

Behind the counter sales of PSE (sudafed related) products started January 1st in Oregon (without a prescription) thanks to HB 2648 in 2021 session.

As the main proponent and sponsor of this bill I am so excited for it’s taking effect today. There is ONE small catch and it may be why if you are trying to buy some today, you may not find it. As required by the bill, in order to limit the sales of PSE products, the product is sold “behind the counter” with the purchaser providing a driver’s license or other government issued photo ID. That is then “swiped” by the pharmacists to determine, in a national data base, if you bought the product in the last 30 days. We missed something when we drafted this bill.

ORS 807.750 doesn’t allow “swiping” by a pharmacy. Here is the statute:

(2)Except as provided in subsection (6) of this section, a private entity may not swipe an individual’s driver license or identification card, except for the following purposes:
(a)To verify the authenticity of a driver license or identification card or to verify the identity of the individual if the individual pays for a good or service with a method other than cash, returns an item or requests a refund.
(b)To verify the individual’s age when providing an age-restricted good or service to any person about whom there is any reasonable doubt of the person’s having reached 21 years of age.
(c)To prevent fraud or other criminal activity if an individual returns an item or requests a refund and the private entity uses a fraud prevention service company or system.
(d)To transmit information to a check services company for the purpose of approving negotiable instruments, electronic funds transfers or similar methods of payment.

So, to fix this, before I left office last fall, we had a new bill drafted that adds pharmacies to that list above. The representative who replaced me, Rep. Jessica George, will submit the bill for the 2022 Legislative session and if it passes, will be in effect immediately and retroactive to Jan. 1, 2022. I hope that this passes and all Oregonians will be free to purchase this product as specified in the original bill. There are limits on how much and how often.

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