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Thailand probes hospitals for missing cold drugs

March 26, 2012
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BANGKOK—Thai authorities are investigating hospitals in connection with the diversion of cold medicine that could be used in making the illegal stimulant methamphetamine.

The Department of Special Investigation on Monday announced the establishment of a task force to investigate 11 public hospitals and 11 private hospitals, clinics and pharmacies found to have made suspiciously big orders of pills containing pseudoephedrine.

Pseudoephedrine is a decongestant contained in many over-the-counter cold medicines. It is also commonly used in the illicit production of methamphetamine.

Thailand is a major market and transit point for methamphetamine.

The DSI said the probe was initiated after authorities discovered discarded packaging for 1.2 million cold tablets in northern Thailand last month.

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