Drug Testing

Last updated: May 23, 2018

What Does Drug Testing Mean?

Drug testing refers to any analysis of a biological specimen to determine whether it contains traces of drugs or their metabolites. Drug tests may be conducted using urine, breath, hair, saliva, sweat, and blood. Drug tests may be conducted prior to employment, in response to reasonable suspicion, following an accident, or on a random basis. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, 57 percent of American businesses require that candidates pass a drug test. In Canada, the number is much lower, about 10 percent, and is limited to businesses where safety is a primary concern.


WorkplaceTesting Explains Drug Testing

Organizations conduct drug tests for a number of reasons. Frequent or random drug testing may be conducted for the sake of deterring employees from using drugs. Many companies also believe that employees who avoid drugs will work more efficiently. Finally, maintaining a drug-free workplace is often part of an effort to promote and maintain workplace safety, particularly in environments where heavy machinery is being operated.

Employment drug tests commonly screen for marijuana, cocaine, PCP, opiates, and amphetamines. Some employers may also screen for prescription drugs including barbiturates, methaqualone, benzodiazepines, and methadone.


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