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Drug and Alcohol Test

Definition - What does Drug and Alcohol Test mean?

A drug and alcohol test is an examination or technical analysis of various biological specimens of a human, such as blood urine, exhaled air, sweat, saliva and hair, to determine the presence of alcohol and other drugs or their metabolites. The test includes the tracing of drugs, which is otherwise prohibited, or their metabolites and levels within the body of the person being examined while working, driving or committing an offense in the workplace or in public places.

Safeopedia explains Drug and Alcohol Test

Drug and alcohol tests are common in workplaces. Many employees are tested pre-employment and while on the job, with the intention to establish better discipline, less absenteeism, high productivity, an accident free work environment, lower cost in employee health care, etc.. It also helps the company to establish a strong health and safety culture. Various biological specimens are collected from employees and tested for illegal drug abuse. However, only the urine is approved in some countries’ regulations of workplace drug testing programs. Hair follicle drug testing is also popular due to high sensitivity, history and accuracy in results.

There are several methods of drug and alcohol tests that show the presence and level of drugs or alcohol in one’s body. These tests can be done by using one or more of the following samples collected from the employees:

  • Blood - generally screened for illegal drugs
  • Breath - to detect and measure alcohol level
  • Hair - to detect and analyze the drug abuse history for 90 days
  • Sweat - generally used for detecting drugs
  • Saliva - generally used for detecting alcohol and other drugs
  • Urine - most commonly used for screening employees for illegal drugs and alcohol

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