Newsbrief: Fatal Drug Overdoses on the Rise in Florida 6/28/02

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1,304 people died in Florida due to drug overdoses last year, according to Florida Department of Law Enforcement data. Almost half of these deaths were from mixing drugs. The drugs indicated as being present in the systems of the deceased include alcohol, benzodiazepine (Valium), marijuana, cocaine, GHB, heroin, hydrocodone, oxycodone, ketamine (Special K), methadone, methylated amphetamines (ecstasy, methamphetamine and similar compounds), nitrous oxide (laughing gas), PCP and Rohypnol ("roofies"). This represents a significant increase in deaths related to heroin, cocaine, methadone, oxycodone and hydrocodone. Though overall statistics for oxycodone and GHB-related deaths showed an increase, the latter part of the year has shown a decrease, especially for GHB overdoses.

This number does not include those who died of alcohol overdose alone. Alcohol was most likely of all the drugs in the report to be present in the body of someone deceased due to an overdose, followed by valium and cocaine. Those drugs least likely to be present were GHB, nitrous oxide, ketamine, Rohypnol and methylated amphetamines. The only drug to have fatal overdoses drop was alcohol.

10. Newsbrief: New York Pharmacies Fail to Distribute Sterile Syringes

Nearly one-third of pharmacies in New York City that have committed to participate in syringe-sales programs still refuse to distribute syringes without a prescription, says a report from the New York Academy of Medicine. The Bronx is the hardest hit, with two-thirds of its pharmacies failing to comply with the program. Dr. Ruth Finkelstein, author of the report, says that New York City's HIV epidemic is fueled by injection drug use and that access to sterile needles is essential to curbing the spread of the disease.

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Issue #243, 6/28/02 Editorial: The Specter of Coming Violence | DRCNet Interview: Roger Goodman, Voluntary Committee of Lawyers | DRCNet Book Review: Drug War Heresies | Supreme Court Allows Drug Testing All Students in Extracurriculars | Slim Supreme Court Majority Upholds But Also Criticizes Mandatory Minimum Sentencing | New York Rockefeller Law Reform Dies This Year as Pataki, Democrats Deadlock | Vermont Governor Quietly Signs Compromise Medical Marijuana Bill | Newsbrief: Unitarians Approve Anti-Drug War Platform | Newsbrief: Fatal Drug Overdoses on the Rise in Florida | Newsbrief: New York Pharmacies Fail to Distribute Sterile Syringes | Newsbrief: Arizona Supreme Court Rules Police Knock and Talk Violates Privacy Rights | Newsbrief: Kansas Sentencing Commission Wants to Focus on Prevention | Newsbrief: Illinois Juvenile Drug Courts Given a Green Light | Newsbrief: Medical Marijuana Distributor Angers Judge in California | Newsbrief: UN Reports Drug Use on the Rise Worldwide | Newsbrief: Scottish Police to Ignore Marijuana Use | Web Scan: Uniform Crime Report, World Prison Population List, Transnational Institute, Imani Woods, CDC, WorldNet Daily | The Reformer's Calendar
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