Oxycodone Death Rate Falls in Florida

Oxycodone death rate falls in Florida

The number of deaths caused by oxycodone has reduced significantly in Florida, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

The news was announced Tuesday, highlighting a staggering 41 percent statewide decline in the number of oxycodone-related deaths. Alongside this finding, a report published by the Drugs in Deceased Persons identified a similar decline in deaths caused by alprazolam, hydrocodone, methadone and oxycodone, during 2012.

Attorney General Pam Bondi expressed her excitement upon learning of the news, stating that the reduction in the number of deaths from the prescription drugs was a “blessing.” She also highlighted the law enforcement’s need to remain steadfast to ensure the trend continued.

Meanwhile, according to the Orlando Sentinel, president of the Florida Police Chiefs Association, Phillip Thorne, was airing on the side of caution. Thorne says that the results for most of the drugs are promising, but further vigilance is required.

During March of 2011, Governor Scott implemented special strike teams to tackle drug crime. At the same time, Bondi worked alongside lawmakers to ensure doctors were unable to legally overprescribe dangerous drugs.

Frequency of Occurrence of Drugs in Decedents (Jan to Dec 2012)
Chart demonstrating the drugs that caused the highest number of deaths between 2011 and 2012 (Source: Florida Department of Law Enforcement)

Despite this reduction, the afore-mentioned prescription drugs remain the top cause of death, surpassing that of illicit drugs. According to a statement released by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the drugs that resulted in most of the deaths of 2012 include alprazolam, cocaine, diazepam, ethyl alcohol, hydrocodone, methadone and morphine.

By: James Fenner

FDLE Press Release Link

Orlando Sentinel Link