Finch Paper, Schumer: Keep paper in prescriptions

Posted at: 07/01/2013 6:16 PM
Updated at: 07/01/2013 6:28 PM
By: Mark Mulholland

GLENS FALLS - Pills come with paper. You can't get a prescription in this country without instructions on how to use it.

Those instructions are always in writing.

Some of the guidance from drug manufacturers is printed on paper that's made in Glens Falls.

That's why Finch Paper is opposed to federal legislation that would remove the paper from the prescriptions.

The feds want to make all of that information available online only.

But Sen. Charles Schumer is also opposed, saying not only would it put paper industry jobs in jeopardy, it would hurt consumers.

"If you were to tell that patient, and particularly an elderly patient, 'Well, go online to this website and you'll see what to do.' Forget it. That won't work." said Schumer before a tour of the plant Monday afternoon.

Finch Paper employs nearly 700 people at its Hudson River-side plant in Glens Falls. Deba Mukherjee, Finch Paper's president and CEO called prescription paper "a significant part" of the company's business. So Schumer vowed to do everything he can to keep the paper with the pills.

"I have a little bit of clout in the Senate," said Schumer.  "I'm going to use every ounce of it to prevent this legislation from passing the Senate, preserve jobs at Finch Paper and preserve the health of all of those who use the billions of prescriptions that are issued in the United States of America."

The House already voted to remove the paper from prescriptions. Schumer predicts the legislation will be "dead on arrival" when the Senate returns in September.