Florida distributed more than a half-billion doses of the pain drug oxycodone in 2009, twice as many as the next nearest state and up sharply from the previous year, newly obtained federal figures show. #

According to a Florida Medical Examiners’ 2009 report, drugs that caused the most deaths in the state in that year included oxycodone (1,185) and hydrocodone (265). The report also shows a steady rise in the number of deaths due to the use of oxycodone from July 2008 though December 2009. #

Jim Hall, director of the Center for the Study & Prevention of Substance Abuse at Nova Southeastern University, said the new figures suggest that Florida cannot combat the pain drug problem solely by shutting down pill mills. #

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