Narcan Parties are as scary as they sound, and it's a trend paramedics said could be happening here in Tennessee.

It's not only dangerous, it could skew our record of the opioid crisis.

Some drug users are giving each other Narcan if something goes too far, so they don't have to call 911.

Rutherford County EMS responded to 565 overdose calls, that's 29 pages worth of calls between March of last year and today. But, the EMS director said if these parties are going on, there could be even more.

"There are so many things that can go wrong, so many, so many things that can go wrong."

Randy White's EMS team is never short on Narcan, they make sure of it. Narcan is the drug used to stop the effects of opioids.

"It takes the place of the narcotic."

It's been legal for the public to access in Tennessee since 2014.

"It makes it almost like we're condoning that. Really, the purpose behind the public access law is that we save lives."

Now there's widespread concern about Narcan Parties, the idea is for the drug to be kept on hand just in case, then given to the victim of overdose instead of calling an ambulance.

"That's a huge mistake, because we need to monitor them. We need to make sure the drug is gone from them."

The parties could interfere with official records of overdoses.

"If we don't know what's happening, I don't know the scope of that. The worst part about it is, we're losing time by postponing getting them into the system, and that can mean the difference between life and death."

White said Narcan only lasts anywhere from 15 to 20 minutes depending on the person. If the effects wear off before the narcotics leave your system, you could relapse and stop breathing.

Copyright 2019 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Rebecca Cardenas is a Murrow-award winning journalist who joined News4 as a reporter in September 2017. She currently covers the court systems in Middle Tennessee.

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