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Knox Co. Schools Receive Overdose Reversal Drug

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The Knox County School District is adding an eye opening lifeline to its list of resources, one that aims to keep students, parents and staff from flat-lining.

"Our kids need help, and if we could reach out and help them all, like what we're trying to do with Naloxone, then we would," said John Smith, parent of a Knox County student.

Smith said he welcomes the district's push to include Naloxone in every school.

"I'm really happy that this is coming into our schools because we have people there who can save lives with it," said Smith.

Within two weeks, schools will have two sets of Naloxone on hand, a nasal spray charged with reversing the effects of drug overdoses.

"Until it's out of the schools, we still have a problem," said Smith.

School officials said the medicine isn't limited to students, but to anyone on campus who experiences an overdose.

"We have never had a teacher or a student or a visitor to campus have this occur, but should we, then it will be available," said Patti Bounds, Chair of the Knox County Board of Education.

The state is fronting the bill for the Naloxone, a small price to pay that Smith said will keep an eye on the pulse of education and pull the plug on the state's drug problem.

"I see no reason for resistance," said Smith.

Bounds said the district purchased 251 Naloxone kits through a grant from the Tennessee Health Foundation. She said the kits cost $21,000.

"It could serve as a wake-up call, " said Bounds.

School resource officers and school nurses will be the ones responsible for using Naloxone to save a life, according to Bounds.

Local 8 News asked our viewers on Facebook if they agree with the school district's decision.

"Huge waste of tax dollars," said Tony C. "If you don't have a parachute, you are less likely to jump out of an airplane."

"Sad," said Becky A. "But now yes. I think these should be in schools."

"All this does is condone drug use, whether it be a child or an adult," said JG.

"If it saves a life yes," said Eric W. "Kids are stupid. I've been one."

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