Which Employee Drug Test Program is Best for My Workforce?


Creating a drug testing program that’s right for you consists of two components – choosing the right drug panel and testing frequency. Don’t know where to start? Pre-employment and annual drug testing are a great baseline to foster a drug-free workplace. From what each drug panel tests for, to OSHA-required testing, and common drug-free workplace programs, we’re here to help!

Employee Drug Test Programs

When creating an employee drug test program, sharing the details of your program with current and future staff is the key to success. When all workers are aware and educated about your program, annual, random, or post-accident testing will come as no surprise to your workers with no accusations of partiality. So, what are the most common reasons for drug testing and the best testing frequency considerations for your program? Read on for information about pre-employment drug tests, annual drug tests, reasonable suspicion drug tests, and post-accident drug tests your business can do to protect yourself and your employees.

Pre-Employment Drug Tests

Businesses are allowed by law to require pre-employment drug tests. This empowers you to hire the right candidate! A pre-employment drug test is the first step in fostering a drug-free workplace and is a typical requirement in OSHA-regulated industries. For safety-sensitive positions in construction and manufacturing, this is key to preventing workplace injuries. Many states offer workers’ comp premium discounts for implementing a drug-free policy including Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.

Annual Drug Tests

Many industries require annual drug testing or are required by OSHA to conduct annual drug testing including healthcare, transportation, government, automotive, and manufacturing employers. These industries requiring an annual employee drug test typically require an annual physical exam, both of which can be done in one appointment for faster screening at Mobile Health’s 6,500+ nationwide locations. From the standard 5-panel drug test to a 13-panel drug test, you can schedule your annual testing and physical exam in under 30 seconds in the Mobile Health portal! Request access to our award-winning tech today.

Reasonable Suspicion Drug Tests

Employers reserve the right to test their employees if they have reasonable suspicion that their employees are using illicit drugs. If an employee shows patterns of unsafe work behavior, drug testing can protect the employee from harming themselves or harming others. Mobile Health’s nationwide clinics give you greater access to testing with the industry’s leading result turnaround to get the information you need to make the right decisions for your organization.

Post-Accident Drug Tests

When an employee is involved in an accident, the best way to prevent future safety concerns is to test all employees involved in a workplace accident. Testing the employees involved can help determine whether alcohol or other drug use was a contributing factor to the accident. The Department of Transportation (DOT) and many insurance policies require post-accident drug tests. When an injured employee sues their employer, a post-accident drug test can save your organization from a major lawsuit if drugs are involved.

Random Drug Tests

Random drug tests are a part of many employers’ drug-free workplace policies and programs for workers’ comp discounts. Random testing is determined by a computer-based random-employee generator. Mobile Health can help you set up a quick and efficient random testing program. Random testing encourages employees to honor your organization’s drug-free policy without singling out specific employees.

Return-to-Duty Drug Tests

Return-to-duty tests are specifically used in the transportation industry after an employee has violated the drug and alcohol policy or refused to take a drug test and is given the opportunity to come back to work. To qualify for their return-to-duty drug test, the employee must first: complete their interview with a DOT-qualified Substance Abuse Professional (SAP), complete the SAP’s established treatment program, and have a follow-up Evaluation with the SAP for return-to-duty drug test approval.

Mobile Health’s Customizable and Industry-Standard Drug Testing Panels

From 5 to 13-panel drug tests, Mobile Health can customize your test to your individual needs. Let’s go over the standard drugs tested for each panel and what panels are most common for each industry.

Employee Drug Test: 5-Panel Drug Test

The 5-panel drug test is standard for most testing programs. The Department of Transportation (DOT) and the federal government utilize this test for pre-employment and annual drug testing. The 5-panel drug test typically tests for Opiates (OPI), Marijuana/Cannabis (THC), Cocaine (COC), Amphetamines (AMP), and Phencyclidine (PCP). These are proven to be the 5 most commonly abused drugs in the U.S., making this test a proven tool for making the right hire and protecting your workforce.

Employee Drug Test: 6-Panel Drug Test

The 6-panel drug test adds an additional element to the 5-panel drug test to screen for Benzodiazepines (BZD). Alprazolam, Clonazepam, Diazepam, Lorazepam, Midazolam, and Prazepam are all examples of BZDs. These are typically used to treat anxiety, reducing the activity level of nerves in the brain and spinal cord. Employers with safety-sensitive positions may consider utilizing the 6-panel drug test.

Employee Drug Test: 7-Panel Drug Test

When conducting a 7-panel drug test, many employers choose to add Barbiturates to the list of drugs screened. Allobarbital, Amobarbital, Barbital, Pentobarbital, and Secobarbital are all examples of Barbiturates. These drugs are typically used to relax the body and promote sleep. When abused, this is another drug of concern for construction, manufacturing, and other positions operating heavy machinery.

Employee Drug Test: 8-Panel Drug Test

Methaqualone, known as Quaaludes, is the most common drug added to an 8-panel drug test. Xanax, Valium, and Rohypnol are examples of Methaqualone. This is a highly addictive sedative prescribed as depressant medication to treat anxiety, panic attacks, sleeping troubles, and muscle spasms. Individuals can create a tolerance to this drug, resulting in high volumes of abuse.

Employee Drug Test: 9-Panel Drug Test

Propoxyphene is the most common drug added to a 9-panel drug test. Darvon and Darvocet are examples of Propoxyphene. This substance is intended to relieve moderately severe pain but is often used to increase the effects of sleeping pills, antidepressants, tranquilizers, and antihistamines.

Employee Drug Test: 10-Panel Drug Test

Methadone is the most common drug added to a 10-panel drug test. Dolophine, Armidone, Methadose, Metadol, and Heptanon/Heptadon, are examples of Methadone. Law enforcement officials, medical professionals, and federal, state, or local government employees may be required to take this test. Methadone changes how the brain and nervous system respond to pain and is often used to treat opiate addictions and withdrawals.

Employee Drug Test: 11-Panel Drug Test

Oxycodone/Oxymorphone is the most common drug added to an 11-panel drug test. OxyContin, Paracetamol, Percodan, Targin, Numorphan, and Opana are examples of Oxycodone/Oxymorphone. This drug is used to treat severe pain and is extremely habit-forming.

Employee Drug Test: 12-Panel Drug Test

Meperidine is the most common drug added to a 12-panel drug test. Demerol is an example of Meperidine. This drug is used to help relieve moderate to severe pain, working in the brain to change how your body feels and responds to pain. This drug has a high risk for abuse and addiction and can cause severe, possibly fatal, breathing problems.

Employee Drug Test: 13-Panel Drug Test

Tramadol is the most common drug added to a 13-panel drug test. Ultram® is an example of Tramadol. This drug is a synthetic opioid painkiller, similar to other opiate or opioid drugs such as morphine, oxycodone, and fentanyl.

Complete Customization

We know the ins and outs of every industry and will tailor your test to meet all OSHA standards and other regulations. Don’t know where to start? Talk to one of our experts. We want to learn about you and create a custom drug testing program to help you hire and protect your people with ease.

Mobile Health Employee Drug Testing Program

Our process is straightforward and simple. We give you access to our 6,500+ drug testing locations through our award-winning client portal. You can schedule a drug test along with any other occupational health and employee screening service you need in under 30 seconds. When the test is complete, you get real-time results with all the OSHA-compliant documentation safe and secure in your client portal. Let’s work together to make your employee drug testing program a success!

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