Whether it’s illicit drugs or misuse of prescribed drugs, drugs are a significant issue in all parts of society and the workplace is certainly no different. In fact, the Australian Drug Foundation estimates the use of drugs and alcohol is costing Australian workplaces $5.2 billion a year, due to lost productivity and employee absenteeism.
Implementing a rigorous workplace drug testing program, as part of a wider occupational health and safety program, is a vital tool in reducing the risks to workplaces of drugs. As well as improving safety and safeguarding your business, workplace drug testing can help you improve absenteeism and productivity, and reduce crime and violence in your workplace.
Integrity Sampling’s accredited technicians conduct workplace drug testing for clients as required, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days of the year. Our people are experts in drug testing processes and use the most advanced testing devices and equipment available. This ensures testing accuracy of greater than 99%. Our testing programs are effective, fast and unobtrusive.
Saliva drug testing
If you suspect that an employee may be under the influence of drugs, you want to know now, not days later when the danger to the employee and others has passed.
Integrity Sampling is one of the few Australian companies to offer saliva drug testing for workplaces. Saliva drug testing (or oral fluid drug testing) has several advantages over traditional urine testing methods.
What are the advantages of saliva drug testing?
- Quick Results: Drug testing using saliva is quick, with results available in as little as five minutes. This reduces downtime and allows more people to be tested. Compare this with laboratory based urine testing, where results can take days rather than minutes.
- Non-Intrusive and Convenient: Workplace saliva drug testing is non-intrusive and can be done virtually anywhere. Urine testing needs restroom facilities and, for some people, can make them feel uncomfortable.
- Accurate and Reliable: Testing using saliva is accurate. In fact, using the Dräger 5000 drug testing unit results of 99% accuracy rate and greater are achieved.
- Approved Method: Saliva drug testing has been approved as a preferred method over urine drug testing by Fair Work Australia.
- Enhanced Accuracy: The detection period for urine is greater than it is for saliva. This potentially means, for example, a person who took a drug 1 or 2 days before work and can perform their job safely could return a positive result using urine drug testing. This is why saliva drug testing is considered a more accurate way of determining if someone is fit to be at work.
What saliva drug testing equipment does Integrity Sampling use?
Integrity Sampling is an exclusive Dräger Partner. We use the Dräger DrugTest 5000 for all our saliva drug testing in workplace. This device is similar to the units being used by law enforcement agencies in Australia and globally.
The Drager DrugTest 5000 was independently verified by the NATA accredited Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine and found to be compliant with the new standard AS/NZS 4760:2019. This new Australian/New Zealand Standard 4760 was released in March 2019, making the Dräger DrugTest 5000 one of the first products to have been verified.
German engineered and produced, the product was found to be compliant for the drug classes Amphetamines, Methamphetamines, Cannabinoids, Opiates and Cocaine.
Does Integrity Sampling conduct urine drug testing?
While we believe saliva drug testing is the best method for testing for drugs, we understand that there are businesses that prefer urine testing, so we can undertake urine testing at your facility if you prefer.
How is workplace drug testing conducted?
Using the Drager DrugTest 5000, workplace drug testing is quick and easy. Here is a summary of how workplace drug testing is conducted:
- To analyse saliva for drug testing, a sample must first be taken.
- The person being tested uses a small collection device and places it in their mouth and rubs it under their tongue and around their gums. This collection process takes around 30 seconds to a minute.
- The collection device is then placed in an analysing unit and the sample tested for specific drugs. This includes cannabis, methamphetamines, cocaine and opiates.
- The results are displayed by the unit.
What if you test positive during workplace drug testing?
What happens if your workplace drug testing result is positive?
- While workplace drug testing is accurate – the DrugTest 5000 has an accuracy greater than 99 per cent – it’s not 100 per cent accurate. False positives do occur occasionally. Therefore, confirmation testing is carried out.
- In the workplace, this involves the collection of another saliva sample.
- This sample is then sent to an independent NATA Accredited laboratory for more sensitive and accurate laboratory analysis.
- In the lab, liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis is carried out to identify any substances in the saliva sample. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry is the gold standard for testing. It can identify what family of drugs may be in the sample and what the drug is.
- If the lab result is positive, you have failed workplace drug testing and will face the consequences set out by your workplace.
What consequences will you face for failing workplace drug testing?
If you fail workplace drug testing, will you lose your job?
Unlike drug testing on our roads, consequences for failing a workplace drug test are less defined. That’s because it will depend on your employer’s drug and alcohol policy.
If you work in a high risk role (e.g. pilot, truck driver, train operator) your workplace may have a zero tolerance policy. If this is the case and you fail a drug test, then it’s likely you will lose your job.
In most workplaces, however, dismissal for a first offence is unlikely. You may receive a caution, receive extra education, or get support.
Can you refuse workplace drug testing?
Yes, you can, but this doesn’t mean you should.
While the consequences for refusing workplace drug testing will depend on your employer’s drug and alcohol policy, the consequences can be severe. In general, you are better taking the test and failing than refusing to take the test.
How long do drugs stay in your system?
How long does it take for drugs to be processed by your body?
- Drugs affect people differently, so there’s no definitive answer. While one person could potentially be safe to drive and work 8 to 10 hours after smoking cannabis, for another person it will be longer.
- The level of drugs in a person’s system will depend on a range of individual factors such as sex, age, tolerance, general health, metabolism and mood.
- The strength and quantity of drugs taken, how they were administered and the mix of drugs also plays an important role.
- Even a small amount of cannabis can be detected several hours later in a drug test.
- Methamphetamine can be detected for up to 24 hours and even longer after they were taken.
- Ecstasy can be detected for 24 hours after use and even longer in some circumstances.
- It’s important to remember that like alcohol, drug users can be affected by after-effects long after they’ve taken their last drug. These effects can include tiredness, anxiety, irritability and general wellbeing, which can all affect how safe they are to drive and work.
Choose workplace drug testing for a safer tomorrow
When it comes to workplace safety and productivity, implementing a rigorous drug testing program is an investment that yields significant returns. At Integrity Sampling, we understand the importance of safeguarding your workplace and maintaining compliance with industry standards.
Integrity Sampling can help
Number of drug, alcohol and COVID tests conducted by Integrity Sampling each year
Integrity Sampling locations throughout Australia
Drug and alcohol testing methodology
Testing is conducted before employment or prior to a promotion.
Cause testing is used when an employee’s fitness for work is questioned.
Testing is undertaken following an incident, accident or near miss.
Random drug and alcohol testing is implemented on any given day or time.