Workplace Drug Testing

Workplace drug testing can be an effective deterrent to drug use and abuse in the workplace and by its workers. The goal is workplace safety, as well as employee health and well-being. The four main categories of workplace drug testing are:

  • Pre-employment -- Employers may require a prospective employee to pass a drug test before hiring.
  • Random -- Employers also may test their employees randomly to deter illicit or illegal drug use.
  • Post accident -- After an on-the-job accident, an employer may require a drug test to ensure that drug use did not contribute to the accident.
  • For cause. Also, if an employee acts in an inappropriate way at work, the employer may choose to perform a drug test to ensure that drug use is not the reason for the abnormal and potentially unsafe behavior.

The results, of course, mean that employees or prospective employees testing positive may not get the job they want, may lose their job, or may be directed to a drug treatment program. Workplace drug testing utilizes presumptive screening followed by confirmatory testing and utilizes industry standard cutoffs. Specimen validity testing is often included in a comprehensive workplace drug testing program.