Employers are often concerned about getting a drug test completed in an after-hours situation for post-accident or reasonable suspicion drug testing. It’s 8 o’clock at night and nowhere open to get a drug test completed.
Oral fluid drug testing is designed for an employer representative to collect an oral fluid sample and then the next day send it off to the laboratory for testing. The collection process of the specimen is very simple, and a short training program is readily available. Click Here for a short 4-minute video on the process of collecting an oral fluid specimen.
What we call Lab-Based Oral Fluid is accurate and provides scientifically valid and legally defensible drug test results. All positive specimens are confirmed at the laboratory and results go through a review and verification process by a medical review officer (MRO). Recently the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), part of the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS) approved guidelines for oral fluid testing for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs. This means for employees of the Federal government which sets the standards for Non-Regulated drug testing programs – private employees.
The SAMHSA approval opens the door for the Department of Transportation (DOT) to approve oral fluid testing. This may take some time but will, for sure, come to fruition in the future. Just to be clear, as of March 2020; DOT drug testing programs do now allow oral fluid testing. 2023 DOT update: DOT Oral Fluid Drug Testing, Collections & Mocks
Non-regulated employers should currently look at oral fluid testing for after-hours situations for post-accident or reasonable suspicion drug testing. The oral fluid drug test has a shorter window of detection so if you get a positive it will be from the more recent use of the drug. Drugs in oral fluid may be detectable in less than 1 hour and remain detectable from 5 to 48 hours.
What Drugs Can Be Detected in Oral Fluid Drug Testing
Currently the drugs that can be detected in oral fluid include: Cocaine, Opioids, Barbiturates, Amphetamine/methamphetamine/ecstasy, Phencyclidine (PCP), Propoxyphene, Benzodiazepines, Methadone, Cannabinoid (THC) and Ethyl Alcohol. We call this test the Oral Fluid 9 Panel with OXY and Alcohol. At National Drug Screening we work with our partner laboratory – LabCorp to provide the 9 panel oral fluid test. Other laboratories we work with for oral fluid testing include Quest Diagnostics and Alere Toxicology (Abbott).
Collection Site Devices
There are various collection site devices available to facilitate the collection of the oral fluid drug test. These include:
Each of the above devices have individual training programs and work with specific laboratories. LabCorp works with Quantisal, Quest Diagnostic has a proprietary device – Oral-Eze and Alere Toxicology (Abbott) works with Intercept.
Why Oral Fluid Drug Testing
As mentioned above it is perfect for post-accident and reasonable suspicion drug testing. As an employer, your manager or supervisor can do the collection anytime 24/7. The specimen gets shipped off to the lab and you get a verified result which if positive shows recent use of the drug detected. Apart from DOT drug testing and the States of Hawaii, Vermont and New Hampshire – oral fluid testing is legal. Oral fluid testing is also accurate.
More on Oral Fluid Testing
Oral Fluid Drug Testing (General Overview)
Is an Oral Drug Test the Right Option for Your Business? (posted March 3, 2019)
Oral Fluid Drug Testing and Potential Cost Savings (posted August 8, 2017)
Oral Drug Fluid Testing for DOT? (posted May 15, 2015)