Urine drug testing in WA – what’s the process?

Urine drug testing in WA may be common but it’s not, in our opinion, the best method.

Recently we brought you the story of a young family that ingested marijuana, allegedly after eating a brownie from a café. Urine drug testing of the WA family’s mother and her two children proved the presence of the drug, which begs the question, what is urine drug testing, how reliable is urine drug testing in WA and what is the process?

Urine drug testing in WA explained

Of course in its simplest term, urine drug testing is a pretty simple process. You simply pee in a cup to provide a sample and then that sample is tested for drugs. But, thankfully, it’s all a bit more rigorous and scientific than that!

While it does start with a simple pee in the bottle, even this part of the process is quite rigorous. Steps need to be taken to ensure that the person who is providing the sample actually does provide the sample and the sample doesn’t come from someone else, and that the sample is in fact urine and not some other substituted product. That’s why supervision is required when samples are being provided. Not too much supervision, but enough to ensure the process is valid.

Once a sample is taken and details written on the bottle, a trained technician can then conduct the urine drug testing. There are two types of urine drug testing:

  • An immunoassay test, a biochemical test that is quick, simple and cost-effective.
  • A gas chromatography-mass spectrometry test, an analytical test that is more expensive and take a little longer to complete.

Both methods of urine drug testing are reliable, however, they’re not 100% reliable. The immunoassay urine drug testing, for example, can in rare cases show the presence of a drug when the person is in fact clean. That’s why a robust urine drug testing process will follow up a positive immunoassay test with further testing. It’s also worth pointing out that the gas chromatography-mass spectrometry can detect a wider range of drugs than immunoassay testing.

Urine drug testing in WA workplaces

While urine drug testing is carried out in WA workplaces, if you’re a regular reader of our blogs you’ll know that Integrity Sampling prefers and recommends saliva drug testing.

There are several reason for this, including:

  • Saliva drug testing is less intrusive and embarrassing than urine drug testing for your WA business.
  • Saliva drug testing can be carried out virtually anywhere, whereas urine drug testing requires restroom facilities.
  • While tampering of samples isn’t common, it’s more likely for urine drug testing.
  • Most importantly, saliva drug testing is a more reliable test of a person’s ability to be safely at work. Using urine drug testing in your WA workplace can result in people who have taken a drug the day before or even days before providing a positive result, as the detection period is generally longer.

Want to know more about urine drug testing in WA and why we prefer saliva drug testing? Contact us by phoning 1300 SALIVA.


Urine drug testing in WA may be common but it’s not, in our opinion, the best method.

By Paul Marshall

Paul is the Owner and Director of Integrity Sampling WA, which has technicians that provides drug and alcohol management services, including drug and alcohol testing, in the Perth area and all regional locations within Western Australia. You can connect with Paul Marshall on LinkedIn

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