Employers typically mandate drug tests for illicit substances for potential employees. They may also habitually drug test hired employees to ensure they are not using drugs. Urinalysis is the most common drug test for employees. 

Urinalysis is the only federally mandated drug testing method. It screens for recent drug use. Despite the popularity of urine drug tests, some employers still seek more knowledge about the method. 

Why should an employer drug test potential employees?

There are multiple beneficial reasons for the employer to test its employees. First, it lowers the risk of employees making accidents while on duty. A drug screening will also prevent people with drug usage problems from getting a job where they must stay focused. Drug tests allow an employer to build a secure and productive work environment. 

Urine drug tests are often used because they are cost-effective and reveal results relatively quickly. Urinalysis tests may be conducted in a lab or at home.

Is there a specific substance that urinalysis tests for?

Usually, urinalysis screens the sample for a variety of drugs, not just a singular one. There are scenarios where urinalysis may just test for a particular drug such as marijuana, but this is less common. Marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, methamphetamines, opiates, nicotine, and more can be detected during a urine drug test. 

Typically, there are 5 to 10 illicit substances that are tested in a sample. 

How many types of urine drug tests are there?

There are two general types of urinalysis drug tests. One type is the immunoassay, which is faster and cheaper than the other type, gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). 

Immunoassay testing is the riskier option for employers, as it will occasionally produce false positive results. If your first immunoassay test results come back positive, lab experts recommend taking a subsequent GC/MS test. The GC/MS is pricier and involves a more time-consuming testing process but rarely produces false positive results. 

How long are illicit drugs detectable in urine drug tests?

It depends on the substance consumed. A substance like marijuana will remain in the system longer than alcohol. Normally, a urinalysis test can detect recent drug use that occurred in the previous day to three days. 

Can employees cheat urine drug tests? 

Unfortunately, yes. Drug tests that require samples can be beaten and are not infallible. Employees can adulterate urine samples in many types of ways. Someone can dilute the sample by drinking large amounts of fluids before the test, thus flushing the substance out of his or her system. Employees can also cheat the test by obtaining a clean urine sample from somebody else. 

There are ways that an employer can shut down employees looking to cheat a drug test. They can hire a lab that checks the pH and temperature of the sample before screening it. Additionally, they could deny an employee’s attempt to take an at-home urinalysis test. 

What is the workplace process of drug testing?

Each workplace will handle drug testing in its own way, but there is a general way of doing things. Most times, an employee or potential employee will be notified about a urine drug test in advance. Some employers choose to alert employees a day in advance, and some choose a longer window of time. Random drug testing is also an option 

Employers also have to decide on the location of the drug test. The most popular spots are at a laboratory, at the company’s facilities, or at the employee’s home. 

Why should you use Soteria Screening for lab-based urinalysis drug testing? 

It is simple. Soteria Screening Laboratories knows the importance of pre-employment drug testing and a drug-free workplace. Soteria Screening employs drug testing experts to make sure you know exactly who you are hiring. 

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