Whether your company is small in stature or a veritable giant on the corporate front, when it comes to safety training and security issues, drug testing protocol and practice will always be a recurring topic. Drug testing in Saskatchewan can be conducted at any one of numerous collection sites. Located in Prince Albert, Innovative Training Solutions is ideally situated to offer services to central and northern Saskatchewan.
Alcohol screening with breath alcohol testing (which tests the amount of alcohol in one's breath), swab, urine drug screens, hair testing, saliva testing, sweat gland drug screens and taking blood are the typical tests, with urine testing being the most common type of drug test. The level of efficacy in your testing is determined by the type of drug test and the timeframe in which the test is administered.
With urine analysis two specimens are collected for drug detection. Generally laboratory testing is done in a two-tiered fashion with one of the specimens collected, being used for the screening test and another being used, in the event of a positive initial screening test, as a confirmation test. If the participant has tested positive on the initial screening test then the other specimen is sent to a laboratory for confirmation under the scrutiny of a gas chromatography panel.
Hair follicle tests have the longest period–up to 90 days–where the substance(s) the participant used can be screened, but these tests need to be administered two weeks after the drug has been consumed. Likewise–to be excreted in the urine one must allow 6-8 to hours after ingestion for an accurate result. Conversely, saliva tests are amazingly accurate if the person has taken a drug in the past 72 hours, but the testing accuracy rapidly degrades after this window of time has passed.
A history of alcohol ingestion, or not, will be determined by bio-chemical markers in hair tests, but breath alcohol tests or B.A.T. tests are sufficient to root out recent alcohol consumption and, most important, if the employee is presently intoxicated in the workplace.
Once an employer has decided to include drug testing as a standard operating procedure in their company they have to decide on what type of program they will initiate. Random drug testing, pre-employment, and post-incident are some the different programs that companies may opt to use to test for compliance. The pros and cons of each type as well as a cost-benefit analysis will be discussed in next month's blog.