Mobile Drug Testing Labs Bring On-Site Workplace Testing

“A growing drug problem (in a community) shouldn’t affect the ability for area workplaces to remain safe and drug-free.” This is the philosophy on which the newest mobile drug testing lab was founded by a couple in Avon Lake, Ohio. USA Mobile Drug Testing is a company that was established in an effort to save employers both time and money by minimizing the productivity lost when employees must drive to and from an off-site lab. Instead a trained drug testing technician comes to the business to collect samples, which are then sent to a lab for processing. Negative results are reported within one day, but positive results go through more testing which takes an extra day to verify.

USA Mobile Drug Testing can test for a variety of drugs including:

– cocaine

– opiates

– marijuana

– PCP

– amphetamines

In the Avon Lake area, most results come back negative, but the most common positive result is for marijuana usage. Unfortunately, cocaine, opiates, prescription medication and heroin are becoming more common in the area. Since drug testing is not likely to go away with drug use increasing in many areas, mobile drug testing facilities is an effective, efficient business option for those interested in helping people and creating a safer community.

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Substance Abuse at Work is Difficult to Stop

There is no argument that having employees who use drugs and alcohol at work, or who report for work under the influence of drugs or alcohol, costs employers thousands of dollars every year. Some of these expenses include:
– Increases in absenteeism
– Lowered motivation
– Poor performance
– More frequent accidents and safety violations
It seems logical that the use of random drug testing could minimize the risk of drug and alcohol use in the workplace; however, the research doesn’t support that belief. At a paper manufacturing plant in Canada, a study completed by a workers’ union found that in the 22 months following the implementation of a random alcohol testing policy not one single employee had tested positive. Further, in the 15 years before the policy, there were only 8 alcohol-related incidents recorded. As a result, the union filed a grievance against the company, claiming that the testing policy was not justified, which was upheld by an arbitration board’s ruling.
The biggest problem with random drug or alcohol testing is that it is an imperfect means of measuring whether an employee is impaired- which is the real concern employers are trying to address. There are many reasons an employee’s performance can be impaired, such as sleep apnea or sleep deprivation, stress, physical illnesses, or other lifestyle factors. Any of these things can impair an employee’s performance and judgment as much, if not more, than a person who parties on the weekend and returns to work without any impairment in performance on Monday morning, in spite of what may still be measurable in the drug test panel.
Human resources educators are starting to recommend initial drug testing at the time of hiring, followed only by “reasonable cause testing” in industries that are not obviously safety-sensitive and regulated by state or federal requirements: industries such as truck driving, air traffic controllers, mining, among others. “Reasonable cause testing” refers to random testing that is based on a general problem of substance abuse in a team, group, or individual which has been identified through managers actually witnessing the problem or telltale symptoms of substance abuse. Also, good managers are adept at building a rapport with their teams and knowing what is going on in their lives that may be contributing to impaired performance such as a death or critical illness in the family, stress of a life-changing event, the temporary use of prescribed antibiotics or medications, and the like.
The bottom line is that random drug testing is an imperfect way of detecting or reducing substance abuse in the workplace. But when used in tandem with good hiring and management practices, and with “reasonable cause,” it can be a powerful tool for employers to keep both employees and customers safer and happier.

Drug Testing in American High Schools

Random drug testing in the nation’s high school is a hot topic! Not much resistance was offered when high school athletes were tested for performance-enhancing steroids. After all, those substances could affect the outcome of games and compromise personal safety and team safety. Many states have laws that specifically allow and regulate random drug testing for student athletes.

But many school boards are developing policies which require random drug testing for students in all extracurricular activities such as band, choir, dance, speech teams, and clubs. Opponents of such policies object based on 4 primary grounds:

– drug testing of all participants, without cause, presupposes guilt.

– mandatory testing infringes on students’ liberty.

– testing could infringe on privacy rights of students, flagging or labeling those students taking prescribed medications.

– there is no evidence that random drug tests for participation in extracurricular activities is an effective way to prevent drug use among teens.

We are certainly not suggesting that teens should never be randomly tested. In situations involving safety- such as teams sporting activities- and in cases where there is just cause to suspect drug use, random testing can be an early line of defense and intervention. But when unjustified, testing of all participants is expensive and unconstitutional.

What Kind of Drug Test is Best?

There are as many opinions and answers to this question as there are employers who are asking it. And that’s a lot! A 2011 study reported that more than half of all employers conduct drug tests on their employees, opting to take a proactive approach to maintaining a drug-free workplace.

In order for these tests to achieve the desired effect, though, it is important for employers to understand the results of the tests as they are reported back. Four primary factors significantly impact test readings:

– substance tested for

– frequency and duration of use

– employee’s personal chemistry, size, age, gender

– type of test used

substance tested: each substance is processed differently in the body. For instance, THC, the drug in marijuana is stored in an individual’s body fat, while alcohol is processed through the liver, making it easily detectable in the bloodstream.

frequency and duration of use: in general, the more often a substance is used and the larger the dosages, the longer it is detectable in the body. However, some substances are processed through the body easily and eliminated within hours.

personal chemistry, size, age, gender: as mentioned before, THC is stored in fat cells, so a person with more body fat will test positive for marijuana use for longer than a thinner person- all other factors being equal. The duration and intensity of the effects of a drug are dependent on the user’s size; in general, a smaller individual will experience more severe effects and will have more extreme test results.

type of test used: depending on the form of the drug used, it’s accurate measurement will vary in concentration, depending on the fluid tested (urine, saliva, or blood) and the potential for contamination of the fluid.

In general, a positive drug test result IS cause for concern. But employers need to evaluate the results carefully, ask questions, and follow-up with all parties involved to determine the best course of action for the future.

Synthetic Urine Can Get You Fired!

While there are many ways to compromise the results of a urinalysis drug screen, the use of “fake” or synthetic urine is becoming the most common way to cheat in many states. Although available online as a “novelty item,” possession of the substance is a crime in some states, as it is classified as drug paraphernalia. Other states ban the sale of the products instead of their usage.

Most labs have caught on to the trend, and now test for a compound which is found only in synthetic urine in order to identify its deceptive use.

Can an employee be fired for using synthetic urine even if its possession and use are not illegal in their state? The short answer is “yes!” Here’s an explanation of why:

Many federal statutes and regulations which override state statutes require drug testing for people in government sponsored, regulated, or certified/licensed jobs, and for “safety-sensitive” jobs such as airline pilots and commercial drivers. While the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) limits when medical tests may be required, drug tests are NOT classified as medical tests, so those restrictions to not apply. In the current job market, most employees are hired “at-will,” meaning that they can quit for any reason, and the employer can fire them for any reason: even failure or refusal to submit to drug testing. The bottom line is that drug testing can be requested or even required, with or without cause, at any time by at-will employers. And yes, the use of synthetic urine for a urinalysis drug screen is reported as a “dirty” test.

For more information on urinalysis test kit options, check out our web page!

ONE SCREEN DRUG TEST DIP CARDS

American Screening Corporation is proud to present our clients with a new faster and accurate FDA Approved Drug Testing Dip Card. 

 Call Ron Kilgarlin today to Learn More about our New ONE SCREEN DRUG TEST!

Phone: 318-227-4994  ext 10

ron@americanscreeningcorp.com