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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. _ Prescription drug overdoses killed more people in Florida last year than illegal drugs such as cocaine and heroin, even though those drugs are both also on the rise, a report issued by the state's medical examiners said on Thursday.
Jim McDonough, director of the governor's Office of Drug Control, said the report underscores the need for better monitoring of prescription narcotics, a proposed safeguard that failed to pass in the recent special session of the Legislature.
Illegal drugs last year were found at lethal levels in 698 cases, compared with 940 with lethal levels of prescription narcotics, the report showed. A reminder of the continuing danger came earlier this month when two teens in Palm Beach Gardens overdosed on prescription drugs.
McDonough said a spike in illegal drug deaths from heroin and cocaine _ a combined …