Indiana’s prosecutors want to ban the over-the-counter sale of pseudoephedrine, a drug used to make methamphetamine.

The Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council announced Wednesday it wants a change in state law that would require a doctor’s prescription to purchase pseudoephedrine.

The ban will be one of their top priorities in the coming legislative session.

Dearborn and Ohio County prosecutor Aaron Negangard said restricting pseudoephedrine sales would help crack down on the number of meth labs in Indiana.

“In states that have done it, there has been a significant drop in the manufacture of methamphetamine,” he said.

Critics say the measure is punitive and would force those who are sick to visit a doctor just to fight a common cold.

But Negangard said the something needs to be done to address the state’s drug epidemic.

“Heroin is a huge problem and meth’s a huge problem. I don’t know which one is worse, but we are number one in meth labs in the country, so obviously it’s a significant problem within our state,” he said.

Kentucky instituted restrictions on the sale of pseudoephedrine in recent years in a bid to combat meth.

The Indiana group is also asking lawmakers to stiffen penalties for drug dealers.

The group also wants tougher penalties for drug crimes that involve a firearm, occur near a school, involve a child or result in death.

The Indiana General Assembly convenes Jan. 5.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

(Image via Dan DeLuca/Creative Commons)

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation."