Drug testing at random provides a powerful testing method for companies to ensure that no illegal drug use occurs among its employees at any time. The Department of Transportation (DOT) refers to random drug testing as the “best tool employers have for deterring drug and alcohol use in the workplace”.
Transportation is a safety-sensitive industry. Consequently, every DOT regulated agency as well as the Coast Guard have their own regulations that establish minimum levels of random drug testing. Many industries besides transportation conduct drug testing at irregular intervals; however, its widespread practice in transportation sheds light on its effectiveness for any business aiming to remain drug-free.
Experts point to its element of surprise as the main factor that makes random testing such a useful deterrent against drug use. Employees know testing could occur at any time. Consequently, presented with an opportunity to take illicit drugs, they have yet another important reason to abstain. In those situations, their employment depends on remaining drug-free.
Two-pronged testing approach
When combined with pre-employment drug tests, unannounced testing can minimize the likelihood of undesirable or even dangerous behavior among employees. Generally, employees have less time to submit a sample for a random drug test than for a pre-employment test. That eliminates abstaining from a drug habit in anticipation of a test as an option.
Employers and employees alike should remember that a positive random drug test does not automatically result in termination. Random testing helps employers identify those with substance abuse issues. Subsequently, they can refer those employees to the appropriate treatment. Employee assistance programs (EAP’s) offer employees a fair chance at recovering from drug addiction, and are an integral part of any successful drug-free workplace program.
Employers should consider setting up a workplace drug testing policy that clearly outlines the consequences of positive tests. This policy must be applied for all cases, involving all positive employees.
How Mobile Health Can Help
Mobile Health can work with your business to perform a drug testing needs assessment. We also handle all drug testing needs your program requires through our seven NY clinics/collection sites and national network of 3,300+ provider partners.
Mobile Health can administer blood, hair and SAMHSA, DOT-certified urine drug tests and non-DOT drug tests. These tests detect anywhere from 5 to 13 commonly abused drugs. All results are then available to view online through our client portal. Furthermore, a Medical Review Officer verifies the validity of positive results before reporting an accurate final result.