The A, B, sees of positive drug and alcohol testing


If you’re a manager or supervisor and one of your people has just provided a positive drug or alcohol test, what do you do? Your initial reaction may be to discipline the person straight away, but before you do, it’s important to take a deep breath and wait until the test is confirmed.

This confirmation testing is important for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that drug and alcohol tests aren’t 100% accurate. For example, at Integrity Sampling, we use the most advanced drug and alcohol testing devices and equipment available and our people are highly trained technicians. In fact, we our testing accuracy is greater than 99%. But even we can’t ensure 100% accuracy. That’s why you need to wait for the confirmation test from an approved laboratory before taking any action.

This process is similar to that used with drug testing in sport, sometimes referred to as A and B samples. When an athlete initially tests positive to a drug this is referred to as the A sample. An athlete will only be banned if the B sample proves positive.

So if one of your people does provide a positive drug test, make sure the person is made safe by removing him or her from the immediate work area. But don’t start disciplinary action. Give the person the benefit of the doubt and wait for results from the second sample.

What do you do if one of your workers provides a positive drug or alcohol test?

By Michael

Michael is the founder of Integrity Sampling and is responsible for overseeing all national operations. He is based at Integrity Sampling's head office in Melbourne and is also responsible for the co-ordination of drug and alcohol testing within Victoria, assisting in the implementation of drug and alcohol (fit for work) policies and the presentation of drug and alcohol education and awareness programs. You can connect with Michael Wheeldon on LinkedIn

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