Drugs & Alcohol Testing In The Workplace

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The prevalence of drugs and alcohol in your workplace can have a major impact on the productivity of your employees, hugely impacting on your business performance. Over a 1 year period, more than 20% of employees in the United Kingdom turned up to work coming down from the effects of drugs, and over 45% came to work either with a hangover or from the effects of alcohol (Global Drug Survey, 2014). Drug and alcohol use in the workplace is especially a concern when employees operate heavy machinery and vehicles as part of their day to day role

Not only does the use of drugs & alcohol affect employee performance during work, but their use means workplace absences become commonplace and the probability of accidents increases. It is important to implement a proper policy on drugs and alcohol as well as on testing in the workplace to reduce these risks. Our team are experts at creating drug and alcohol policies fit for your business and complying with the UK law on drug and alcohol testing in the workplace – get in touch to see how we can help today!

Drug & Alcohol Testing In The Workplace

We offer two types of alcohol and drug testing in the workplace: instant testing and lab testing. Both tests ensure that our clients receive accurate and quick results, tailored to their requirements. The difference between the two tests is:

  1. Instant drug and alcohol tests in the workplace are carried out on your site. For alcohol testing in the workplace we use a police-standard breathalyser, and for drug testing in the workplace we use an instant urine drug test kit. The workplace drug test kit tests for 13 different illicit drugs (different industries may differ using different amounts of drugs to be tested). The breathalyser gives a standalone alcohol test result, whilst the urine test gives a negative or non-negative result. In the event of a non-negative result, the sample is decanted into a lab sample tube and sent to our United Kingdom Accredited Service (UKAS) lab for further analysis.
  2. Standalone lab analysis is used for either confirmation of drug and alcohol results or it can be used if the client specifies this. Lab tests will come at an additional cost.

Additionally, we are able to undertake with-cause testing for both drug and alcohol in the workplace. You have a legitimate suspicion surrounding one of your employees and require a drug or alcohol test, or there may already have been an accident that requires further investigation. We are on hand to give you the results you need as fast as possible, just contact our expert team today.

David is trained to UKAS-standard for drug and alcohol testing at work, and all our technicians have had training in-house to carry out testing with expertise. Our clients include Nikko Denko, Hinckley Point Power Station and Dacrylate Paints, to name but a few.

We are closely situated to the new East Midland Gateway on the Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Leicestershire borders, and we’re always on-hand to travel, capable of performing drug and alcohol workplace testing in our office or on-site.

Workplace Drug & Alcohol Testing Laws

There are a range of laws that surround drug and alcohol testing in the workplace. We make sure that both our team and our clients adhere to the correct legislation. In order to carry out a workplace drug test, you need the consent of your employees. Provided you included a policy on drug testing in the initial contract of employment, they will have agreed to this when they signed the contract. If you want more information on writing a drug and alcohol workplace policy then get in touch with us today.

If an employee refuses a workplace drug test even after they had initially given consent, disciplinary action may be taken if there are good grounds for testing. The test is usually counted as a positive if they refuse consent.

Furthermore, employers must limit workplace drug testing to only the employees that need to be tested or they must ensure the tests are completely random. You cannot single out particular employees for testing unless the nature of their jobs justifies doing so.

How David Barber Occupational Health Can Help With Workplace Drug & Alcohol Testing

We help you ensure you remain fully compliant with all governmental laws surrounding drug testing in the workplace, whilst getting you the results you require. Contact us to discuss your requirements and we’ll help ensure your workplace remains drug and alcohol-free and compliant with the law as well as your own drug and alcohol workplace policy.

Writing Your Workplace Drug & Alcohol Policies

We recommend a simple and practical approach to writing a workplace drug and alcohol policy. We have an example drug and alcohol policy on our resources page you can view and download. Alternatively, get in touch with our team and we can talk through your needs and requirements to write you a bespoke drug and alcohol policy that is suited to your business.

Online Management System

One of the many benefits we offer at David Barber Occupational Health is the use of our online management system. You will be able to access personalised reports from our services and access drug and alcohol test results for your employees. The online system we use ensures all of your data is secured, only accessible to you via a unique login and has ISO accredited security standards. Find out more about our client system by emailing us.

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Workplace drug tests work in a similar way to a pregnancy test. The drug testing sample sticks identify traces of the substance being tested for, providing a line in the window of the test kit.

You will then receive either a negative or non-negative drug test result. The samples are then sent to the lab for further analysis to see if the levels are above the minimum levels under EU legislation.

This depends on the type of drug test you opt for. Our instant workplace drug test is carried out on site and we can provide you with results that same day. Standalone lab analysis, on the other hand, can take around 24 – 48 hours depending on when the testing is carried out. For example, if carried out on a Friday, the results will be Tuesday. If carried out on a Monday, the first samples will be available Tuesday with levels on Wednesday or Thursday.

Typically a workplace drug test kit is used to test for 13 different illicit drugs (different industries may differ using different amounts of drugs to be tested). Get in touch with us to find out what substances we can test for and what we recommend for your business.

The amount of time a drug will remain in your system depends on the type of drug consumed, the dose as well as the individual’s characteristics such as their sex, age and their weight. Many drugs will remain in your system for up to 4 days, but this can be longer.

Alcohol testing at work is carried out using a police-standard breathalyser, providing instant and accurate results.

The employment contracts signed by your employees should outline the drug and alcohol policy you have in place and state if you require your staff to partake in randomised testing. If any employee refuses a drug test even after they have given consent then they can expect disciplinary action to be taken against them if there are good grounds for testing. The test is usually counted as a positive if they refuse consent.

If one of your employees fails their instant workplace drug test, we will often then use a standalone lab analysis for confirmation of results. What happens to the employee next is down to what is stated in your drug and alcohol policy. Make sure your employees are fully aware of your policy towards drug and alcohol abuse and ensure they know the consequences if they fail to pass.

To get a quote for a drug and alcohol test for your employees/workforce, please get in contact with our friendly team who can discuss prices with you.

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