Types of Drug Tests


This type of testing is conducted as part of a conditional job offer. Employers want to know that they are selecting a potential employee who is substance free upon entry. Those who are unable to test negative for a pre-employment screen may have serious chemical problems and may be less than desirable prospects that could lead to additional problems and expenses down the road, consequently, their conditional job offer is often rescinded.

Reasonable Suspicion:

When used appropriately, this type of test is one of the most valuable aids that a personnel department can have. Managers and supervisors have a responsibility to protect the company, the employees and the clients of the organization. It is incumbent on managers and supervisors to remove persons from the workplace who are suspected of being impaired. With proper annual training in recognizing substance impairment in employees, managers and supervisors can competently execute this portion of the policy and potentially avert a costly disaster from occurring.

Post Accident:

This type of testing is enforced under specific criteria of the policy. Examples include: if a fatality occurs, if a vehicle is damaged and unable to leave the scene of the accident under its own power, if anyone required medical attention, etc. Once criteria are met, then a post accident test is conducted. The function of this testing is to be able to determine the cause of the accident.

Random Testing:

This type of test is optional to policies and is not utilized in all cases. The biggest determining factor in deciding if your organization should implement random testing, is whether the position is deemed “safety sensitive”.

Initial Testing:

This testing occurs frequently when implementing a new policy that will include random testing.In an effort to introduce the testing process and make sure everyone is starting from the same place, organizations will often test the entire staff, to include management personnel.

Return to Duty:

When an individual has tested positive, they will invariably need to test again until they are able to produce a negative test. This return to duty test assures the organization that the person is free of substances and is capable of performing their duties unimpaired.

Follow-Up Testing:

This type of testing is used for those individuals who have tested positive. In some instances, it may be the substance evaluator who recommends a course of follow-up tests. They will typically recommend a specified number of tests over a specified period of time.

Breath Alcohol Testing:

Although breath alcohol testing is conducted randomly for federal DOT drivers, it is not standard to most organization’s policies.

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