Drug Screening; Beneficial to Employees and Employers

Certified Drug Collection

Certified Drug Collection

Medical marijuana legalization has been in the news lately, which has prompted many employers to update their employee drug screening policy. According to an EHS Today article, an Ohio based survey shows that at least 62% of American workers have been at work high or drunk at some point in their career. Marijuana is reportedly the most frequently found drug employees test positive for.  What does this mean for the American worker?

Drug use in the workplace can affect workplace safety and job performance. Studies regarding workplace accidents indicate that drug testing is a very important safety factor.  In a prominent study involving Southern Pacific Railroad, workplace injury accidents dropped an amazing 71% after a drug screening program was implemented. Overall, workplace productivity, attendance and job performance all show improvement after the implementation of drug testing. Both employees and employers want to keep the workplace safe.  Employees desire a healthy career with beneficial work in a safe environment. Employers want a safe and productive workforce to enable their business to succeed. Both of these goals are assisted by employment drug screening.

Pre-employment drug screens, post-accident testing, reasonable suspicion and random testing are the most commonly conducted drug tests.  Pre-employment drug tests are effective in screening out drug abusing employees.  However, it is possible that applicants stop drug use prior to the interview process in anticipation of a conditional job offer drug screen.  Post-accident testing helps employers determine if illegal drugs were being used by an employee after an on-the-job accident.  Guidelines are usually in place so that if an employee is involved in such an accident, he or she must test within a specific amount of time before returning to work.  Reasonable suspicion or Probable cause testing is performed when a supervisor observes signs of drug use. Random drug testing is performed unannounced and those tested are arbitrarily selected from a pool of employees.  Because all employees have an equal chance of being tested, this sort of screening serves as a deterrent to illegal drug use.

The benefits to both employees and employers has been studied and documented.  An effective drug testing program in the workplace ensures a more effective workforce which leads to a higher return on investment for the company.  Candidates of a higher caliber are recruited and retained when a company is able to boast a safer work environment.  Setting up drug testing for any company is fairly easy and can be one of the most cost effective preventative safety measures a company can put into place.

The Industrial Health Council offers employee drug screening services conducted by certified collection professionals.  Additionally, IHC specializes in on-site screening services as well as two clinic locations in Birmingham and Decatur Alabama. Our Decatur location offers on-site after-hours nurses availability. For more information on any of IHC’s health and wellness screening programs or a complete list of IHC services contact Gigi Talley at 205-326-4109, email: gigi@i-h-c.org or visit our website at www.i-h-c.org.