Oxycodone-related deaths dropped 25 percent after Florida implemented its Prescription Drug Monitoring Program in late 2011 as part of its response to the state’s prescription drug abuse epidemic, according to researchers. The drop in fatalities could stem from the number of health care providers who used the program’s database to monitor controlled substance prescriptions.
Well, anything’s possible, but maybe, just maybe, the drop in deaths is due to the DEA closing down hundreds upon hundreds of pain clinics, along with numerous pharmacies. The drop in fatalities could also be attributable to the fear that doctors have in prescribing medications on the DEA’s watch list, including oxycodone, and so just don’t prescribe these drugs anymore.
And now that oxycodone-related deaths (note the term “related”) have been reduced, pain patients in Florida are suffering even more. Well, I guess it doesn’t matter, as long as the PDMPs are allegedly helping to reduce the deaths in one patient population, while ignoring the suffering and deaths in another, much larger, patient population.
Suicide deaths, 2013: 2,892 (7.9/day)
9th leading cause of death for Floridians
3rd leading cause of death for youth 15-24
2nd leading cause of death for 25-34
4th leading cause of death for 35-44
4th leading cause of death for 45-54