Workplace drug testing-Getting it right for your business.

 

workplace drug testing kits companies

Workplace drug testing kits

Workplace drug testing is commonplace and growing. More and more companies are facing the real problem of dealing with employees with drug and alcohol problems. Proactive employers are introducing drug and alcohol screening programs to reduce their risk, improve safety in their workplace environments, and to make it apparent to all employees that working under the influence of drugs is not acceptable.

So with such a large problem in the UK why is it not possible to find clear guidance on how to set up a program of drug screening within a workplace ? The simple answer is that no government body or the HSE or other employment agency have a responsibility to oversee the introduction or operation of drug screening. Clear guidance on how to test and what to test for will almost certainly not cover all the possible scenarios experienced in business across the UK, so none exists.

Getting it right for UK Business’s

So here is some starting guidance to base a simple workplace drug testing program on which will keep your testing program within best practice expectations and keep you protected right through to tribunal hearings and disciplinary proceedings.

  • Make it fair. This means random drug screening must be just that. A random cohort across the entire workforce and sampled regularly.
  • Check your terms of employment contracts. If they don’t include a section on your right to request samples for drug and alcohol testing, then any request you make can be declined by the employee.
  • Talk to the workforce and give fair notice of when drug testing will start.
  • Drug misuse should be handled no differently from any other disciplinary matter with full documentation. Best practice would also incorporate support of the employee to seek treatment for the misuse of illicit drugs.
  • Post incident drug screening, is again dependent on ability to drug test employment contract, without this it becomes voluntary.
  • Follow a written procedure for drug screening, witnessed and signed by the donor, with all results carefully documented.

What drugs should be tested for ?

There are no right and wrong drugs to test for. Local issues should be considered. Your local drug team or police liaison officer are ideal contacts to advise on what drugs are a particular problem. Most suppliers will also have a good idea of suitable drug test combination tests for your workforce, so ask their advice. Your demographic should also be considered. If you are testing 50-60 year olds Benzodiazepines may be of interest. If your donors are 18-24 year old party organisers, then Ketamine may be a better choice. Give your test kit supplier good information on who you intend to test, they will recommend suitable test combination kits.

The base drugs which should always be included are

THC Cannabis, Marijuana, Skunk etc..

MOP / OPI Opiates, Heroin.

COC Cocaine, Crack, Charlie.

AMP Amphetamine, speed, whiz

Add to these MTD, methadone, MET Methamphetamine, BZO, Benzodiazepines, and any other local issues which are appropriate.

Most workplace drug testing is performed using a 6 or 7 panel drug testing kit, most incorporated into a collection and storage cup, but you can go as far as a 10 or even a 12-14 drug screen.

POCT Point of care testing

Tests that you run on site, giving immediate positive or negative results are often referred to as POCT’s. These are saliva or urine drug testing kits which screen for drugs and their metabolites in the body fluid added to test membranes in the kits. Both saliva and urine drug test kits are suitable for workplace screening. The accuracy of both is almost identical. Saliva has one major advantage, directly observed sample collection.

All negative screens can be completed in under 10 minutes. These kits are easy to use and have 97-99% accuracy when compared to laboratory tests.

Non Negative POCT results

Workplace testing must move to immediate laboratory confirmation of all non negative POCT results. This is evidential testing, certified to have been conducted using a full workplace chain of custody procedure, and the sample will be tested to UK accredited standards and certified by the receiving lab. The procedure is considered gold standard practice and results will be accepted into employment tribunal hearings if required. Workplace back to lab confirmation chain of custody packs are available from UKDrugTesting and should be purchased at the same time as POCT’s so that they are immediately available on site when you get that first non negative result.

Using an accredited confirmation pack is critical to keeping workplace testing compliant with employment law and defending your actions in tribunal and employment challenges.

Expect a non negative rate of between 4 and 6% as a guide when purchasing.

Pre-employment drug screening

Drug screening potential employees is different from testing an existing employee. Without an employment contract, the decision to test a potential employee rarely has to be justified or defended. Confirmation testing of non negative drug screens is rarely completed unless the offer of employment has been made subject to a medical.

Who can conduct POCT drug screening ?

Any one who is competent to follow a simple procedure is the simple answer. There is no medical training or pseudo medical training requirement. Competence in the procedure and familiarity with the testing kit should be achieved before considering employee testing. Professional packs of POCT’s all come with a detailed manufacturers data sheet and procedure. Additional training is available from the supplier and full drug awareness and drug screening procedure’s and product training is available as a package to employers. Most products also have online product demonstration video training which can be accessed at any time, free of charge, and demonstrate very precisely how to run the POCT kits.

Talk to a UK expert

Need further advise or guidance on which POCT kits are best suited to your workplace environment. We supply some of the UK’s largest and smallest business’s and have a team of experts able to give guidance during UK office hours on 01263 731 168

We also stock the UK’s largest range of onsite drug testing kits combination’s,  all warehoused for next working day delivery. We know one size doesn’t fit all, so we also have the ability to manufacture bespoke combination drug tests to meet your requirements, at the lowest cost. And yes we will match or better your existing suppliers price. Guaranteed.

Using drug testing kits in the workplace pros and cons

Drug Testing Kits Workplace

Workplace drug testing kits UK

The decision to start testing for drugs and alcohol can often be forced upon an employer, faced with an employee crisis, or incident, which brings the problem to light and forces a response or reaction.

It’s easy to get the response wrong. Not knowing how to investigate suspected drugs and alcohol issues is a very common problem, especially for small business owners. The introduction of roadside drug and alcohol testing in the UK has also highlighted the consequences of drug misuse to a wider range of employers, including taxi and private hire fleet owners.

Providing access to suitable screening and testing kits with next working day delivery is where UKDrugTesting specialise. We can offer a comprehensive range of either Oral Fluid / Saliva or Urine drug testing kits in a range of combinations to offer a test for most suspected drug types. These can also be supported with UK accredited Laboratory confirmation testing of all positive onsite test results using a full Chain of Custody sampling pack to provide an evidential, certified confirmation result for use in employment tribunals and disputes.

Can you ask for an employee drug test ?

Yes. Employers in the UK can always request an employee to volunteer a sample for drug testing. Requests must be fair and if the drug test is part of a random drug testing program, the request must be seen to be evenly spread throughout the workplace and not targeted to discriminate against an individual. If the contract of employment does not include provision for drug and alcohol testing as a routine element (requirement) of employment, the employee can decline to be tested.

Targeted testing following a crisis or incident

Again the above rules still apply, so reference to the employment contract is again required. If there is strong suspicion that the employee is under the influence of drugs and / or alcohol but refuses to cooperate with a drug test, the employer must exercise their duty of care to ensure the safety of the employee and their work colleagues. Document all the facts and ideally take witness statements to support your actions.

Workplace drug testing kits

Workplace drug testing kits

Drug Testing Kits Workplace

Workplace drug testing kits UK

We have put together a selection of our most popular drug & alcohol testing kits for workplace drug testing.

The choice for an employer can sometimes be difficult as there are so many different type on onsite drug test kits to choose from.

To help simplify things we have put together a section on our website to include the urine and saliva drug test kits that we have found from experience are best suited to workplace drug testing.

All these drug testing kits are highly accurate professional drug test kits which are easy to use and to interpret and are ideal for drug and alcohol testing at work.

Click here to go to the workplace drug testing kits section of our website

Drug Testing Kits Coupons

drug testing kits coupon codes

We have some new coupon codes this month that can be used to purchase drug testing kits for workplace or employee drug & alcohol screening. The coupons can be used online or over the telephone. If you require any help in choosing which type of drug testing kits would best suit your company please do not hesitate to contact us on 01263 731 168 Monday to Friday 8.30am to 4.30pm or e-mail us

Visit UK Drug Testing for the latest coupons for workplace drug testing kits

Workplace Drug Testing UK-consent and refusal

Saliva Drug Screening

Saliva Drug Screening

Employers in the UK need consent to undertake a drug test. This simple concept is complicated however by the fact that tribunals would normally expect employees to reasonably give their consent to undergo drug testing. In simple terms an employee must have good grounds to refuse a drug and alcohol test, be confident that the employer has requested the test irresponsibly or has been un-fair.

Because most employees are normally expected to reasonably give consent for drug & alcohol testing, they should seek professional advise from their union or line manager before refusing to give a test sample. However, pre-consent is often implicit in many contracts of employment. i.e. the contract will include  a clause agreement between the employee and employer agreeing drug and alcohol screening during the period of employment.

Employers have a responsibility:

  1. To only drug test where it is appropriate.
  2. Be fair in the implementation of the drug testing procedure,
  3. Operate testing in a fully random fashion and not to single out particular employees for drug and alcohol testing unless this is justified by the nature of their jobs or their actions.

Workplace drug and alcohol testing is far more common in safety critical employment roles, and testing frequencies may reasonably be far more frequent. There is no guidance in UK law regarding the frequency of random testing for specific employment roles.

Employees can not be forced or made to take a drug or alcohol test, but if they refuse when the employer has good grounds to request a test, and has acted fairly and responsibly, they the employer can take disciplinary action.

Employers have a legal responsibility to ensure a safe workplace. This includes ensuring that no employee is undertaking employment under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Most employers in the UK use a saliva or oral fluid drug test kit as a first line drug screening test with instant on-site results. This is considered the best first line drug test kit option as it is minimally non invasive, easy and safe to collect in front of the individual being tested, with observed sample collection. A six panel drug screen such as the FirstSign saliva drug test kit is an ideal UK combination drug test for UK workplace screening.

Visit UKDrugTesting.co.uk for more information and to buy drug and alcohol testing kits suitable for workplace drug & alcohol screening