Your first defense in creating a drug-free workplace begins with a well-written company policy. Recently Mark A. de Bernardo, Esq., Partner in the Washington, D.C. Region office of Jackson Lewis LLP and Executive Director of the Institute for a Drug-Free Workplace, presented a Quest Diagnostics webinar: Employee Substance Abuse Prevention Programs: How to Avoid the 12 Most Common-and Costly-Mistakes. Mr. de Bernardo discusses the prevailing areas where errors occur within company substance abuse policies and offers solutions to correct these problems. The common theme throughout the webinar is that policies are often written using vague and subjective terminology causing gray areas subject to interpretation. An example of this is using terminology such as post-accident testing vs. post-incident testing and generalizing policy violation by using misuse and/or abuse. Policies should be distinct, clarifying violation as use, possession, sale, purchase, distribution, conveyance, etc . Mr.
An unsettling trend has recently begun sweeping the nation; the percentage of American workers testing positive for drug tests has increased for the first time in over a decade. Following the analysis of over 8.5 million urine, oral fluid and hair drug tests, Quest Diagnostics confirmed that marijuana and methamphetamines are the leading drugs responsible for the spike in positive results among the workforce. Quest has organized their information to include 3 different categories of workers: employees with private companies (U.S. general workforce); employees subject to federal drug testing rules, including safety-sensitive truck drivers, train operators, airline and nuclear power plant workers (federally mandated safety-sensitive workers); and a combination of both groups (combined U.S. workforce). Since 2003, combined national workplace urine drug tests had not increased; however, the year-over-year percentage has recently shown an increase from 3.5% in 2012 and 3.7% in 2013 to 5.7%
Hair tests are the absolute best way to stop drugs in the workplace. Quest Diagnostics is the worlds leading provider of diagnostic information services. They state that hair testing detects nearly twice the number of positives as a urine test. Unlike urine drug testing, which may only detect drug use within the past 2-3 days, hair testing is able to detect a pattern of repetitive drug use for up to 90 days. While urine testing is well suited to detect recent drug use for post-accident or reasonable suspicion testing, a hair test is the most effective way to evaluate long-term patterns of use, making it an excellent option for a pre-employment or random testing program. Positive test results are confirmed using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS), or in the case of marijuana gas chromatography/mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry (GC/MS/MS), and are usually returned within 48 to 72 hours. With urine drug tests, the positivity rates are often less than 4%. The hair test with
According to Landon Todd of Quest Diagnostics, over the past 20 years accidental drug overdose has increased. Since 1990, death by drug overdose has tripled, making it the leading cause of death in the nation. Opiate drugs such as methadone, oxycodone and hydrocodone have gained popularity since the 90s and in 2010 accounted for over 16,000 deaths. The Pre-Check Company strongly believes that drug testing in the workplace will deter employees from using drugs on and off the job. A drug test helps to protect employees and keep them safe in both the workplace and their personal life. Our drug tests can be performed for pre-employment, random drug testing, or for a reasonable suspicion. Please contact us to set up your own, personal program today! Here is the link to learn more about drug overdose-related deaths in the U.S.: http://blog.employersolutions.com/drug-overdose-is-now-the-leading-cause-of-accidental-death-in-the-u-s/