Toxicology testing is when one or more tests are used to determine the type, and the approximate amount, of any legal and illegal drugs a person has taken. The tests can be performed on the blood, urine, hair, sweat, or saliva of an individual. Further toxicology testing, also known as drug and alcohol testing, and substance testing, can be done using more specialized medical procedures, though the general goal of testing for drugs, alcohol and other substances is to establish if an individual has taken any legal or illegal drugs.
Why Are Toxicology Tests Performed?
Toxicology tests are done by different companies, organizations, governmental divisions, and medical professionals to determine whether or not a person has taken any sort of illegal substance. However, sometimes these organizations, along with medical professionals, perform toxicology testing in order to find out whether or not a person has been taking their prescription drugs as directed.
Other reasons toxicology testing is done are for work, school, internships, and to determine the status of recovery or progress with certain medications. A lot of organizations require drug testing for their employees, and some states have absolutely required and mandated drug testing for all of their employees. Doctors also routinely test their patients for various legal and illegal substances to ensure their patients are not taking or abusing medications without their doctor knowing.
How Drug And Alcohol Testing Policies Affect People and Organizations
Toxicology testing is implemented by states differently. Some states have mandatory drug and alcohol testing policies in order to ensure a safe, effective, and legal drug-free workplace. In states with mandatory policies, employers must follow any and all drug and alcohol testing requirements by the local, state, and Federal governments. Certain organizations that receive grants from the government might lose their grants if those organizations are found to be in violation of government drug and alcohol testing policies.
Best Practices For Drug and Alcohol Testing And How Testing Is Done
In order to ensure best practices for toxicology testing, it is best to use a qualified collection facility that operates within the guidelines for drug and alcohol testing. Qualified labs will also handle providing results. Negative test results are generally received within 24 hours, but this varies based on the number and types of tests done. If test results are positive, results could take between 2 days and about 1 week for results since additional specialized testing is often required to further evaluate what substances are present, and how much of any given substance is present.
Different Ways Drug and Alcohol Testing Is Implemented
A few ways toxicology testing occurs in the workplace are either through random testing or routine testing at a set and known time and place. For random tests, individuals might have to receive their test immediately during work without notice. Some random tests allow for people to visit a qualified collection facility within a certain amount of specified time. Routine collection occurs either at work or by visiting a qualified collection facility in accordance with a pre-specified amount of time that is known in advance, usually specified in writing or as part of a contract. For this type of routine collection, collection usually occurs every year or so and the collection time is known in advances such as in a contract or written notice received in advance and before the collection time.
Toxicology testing is ultimately used to facilitate a drug-free work environment, and it is used to also provide comfort to people so they can feel safe that there is also a system in place to catch and deal with those who work under the influence of substances that can cause harm to the user of the substances, or other people. Organizations use drug and alcohol tests to ensure the highest possible standards of safety for their employees, and should any individuals test positive for substance abuse, organizations also have policies in place to determine how to deal with those who test positive for substance abuse so the safety and effectiveness of the workplace are not compromised.