New Drug Abuse Statistics From Florida Department of Law Enforcement

Friday, October 26th, 2012

Drug abuse statistics can be shocking, but they provide realistic information about the prevalence of drugs usage across the nation. New drug abuse statistics released by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) indicated that deaths from prescription drugs dropped 6.37 percent in Florida last year. According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement report, deaths caused by Oxycodone in Florida dropped 17.7 percent last year over the year before, a significant drop in this important drug abuse statistic. According to the report, Oxyocodone killed about twice as many people as cocaine last year in the State of Florida.

Unfortunately the latest drug abuse statistics indicate that deaths caused by benzodiazepine (a type of tranquilizer that includes Xanax and Valium) increased by almost 13 percent. It caused the most deaths in the state, followed by Oxycodone.  In fact, the report indicates that in Fort Myers last year, a major city on Florida’s west coast, 27 people were killed by Alprazolam, a common form of benzodiazepine. That’s up from 23 in 2010.  In the same city, Oxycodone killed 39 people in Fort Myers last year, compared with 38 in 2010.

Drug Abuse Statistics Show A Rise

Unfortunately, drug abuse statistics show that the abuse of certain drugs like Alprazolam continue to rise. These statistics lead to the belief that the prescription drug epidemic has not gone away.  In fact, these drugs are becoming as popular, in some areas more popular than illegal street drugs.

Fortunately, the government and drug manufacturers are better able to control prescription drugs, monitor drug abuse statistics. These drug abuse statistics show that there is still much work ahead for law enforcement officials in Florida and across the nation.

Prevention Efforts

In 2011, Florida Governor Rick Scott launched an effort to detect prescription drug abuse and lower statewide levels of abuse. As a result, seven regional strike force teams have made over 3,300 arrests, including 61 doctors since May 2011.

According to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement report, more than 780,000 pharmaceutical pills, 106 vehicles, 503 weapons, and almost $10 million dollars have been seized related the distribution, selling, and abuse of prescription drugs. In addition, 254 clinics have been closed in relation to these findings.

Drug Abuse Statistics Show An Encouraging Results

Within the past two years, since the implementation of this high-power drug abuse prevention program, the number of drug abuse deaths has decreased in the State of Florida. This change comes as a shocking, yet positive surprise, as it is the first decrease in drug abuse deaths in over a decade in the State of Florida. Attorney General Pam Bondi gives credit of these positive results to local, state, and federal partners, according to an FDLE release. These measures are playing a vital role in saving lives.

In addition, Pam Bondi and other Florida leaders have expressed their committal to this program until drug abuse statistics show that prescription drug abuse in Florida ceases to be a fundamental problem. Eliminating this prescription drug abuse is key to enhancing the quality of life and safety of Florida residents and law enforcement officials. It is safe to say that this goal of achieving statewide sobriety from prescription drug abuse is a major goal of law enforcement officials and governmental members within Florida.