Businesses Struggle to Find Drug-Free Workers

by Nicole Jupe on May 17, 2016

New York Times writer Jackie Calmes reports that employers across the United States are struggling to find workers who can pass a pre-employment drug test. Businesses started noticing a trend once job candidates learned that the next step of the hiring process was a drug test and nearly half of the applicants simply skipped the test and left. The challenge of hiring drug-free employees reflects a rise in drug use, especially marijuana.

Data from the Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index™ was cited saying that for the second consecutive year, the percentage of American workers [General U.S. workforce] who tested positive for illicit drugs increased — from 4.3 percent in 2013 to 4.7 percent in 2014. And 2013 was the first year in a decade to show an increase in positivity rates.

“If we go back to 1988, the combined U.S. work force positivity was 13.6 percent when drug testing was new.  But two consecutive years of increases are worrisome,” said Dr. Barry Sample, Director of Science and Technology, Quest Diagnostics Employer Solutions.

In addition, results from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) show that one in 10 Americans aged 12 or older reported in 2014 that they had used illicit drugs within the past month — the largest share since 2001.

After looking at our workplace drug testing data and the federal government’s survey results, Dr. Sample said it “indicates higher drug use among those who work for employers without a drug-testing program than workers who are tested.”

Read the full New York Times article “Hiring Hurdle: Finding Workers Who Can Pass a Drug Test.”

Read the latest Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index report.

To learn more about drug testing, visit our website or contact us online.

Photo courtesy of The New York Times

Name that Drug: Taming the Tiger

by Landon Todd on May 13, 2016

focus.jpgDATIA focus is the quarterly publication of the Drug & Alcohol Testing Industry Association (DATIA). DATIA focus features a regular, popular column titled, “Name that Drug” where interesting facts about a mystery drug are described in advance of the name being revealed.

The latest edition of “Name that Drug” was written by Dr. Steven Sykes, Post-Doctoral Fellow at Quest Diagnostics, and is titled, “Taming the Tiger.” Give the article a read and see if you can solve the “Name that Drug” mystery in the spring edition of DATIA focus.

To learn more about drug testing, visit our website or contact us online.

Taking the High out of High School

May 12, 2016 Hair Testing

On April 23, the Detroit Free Press reported that the Detroit Catholic Central High School will begin hair testing their students for marijuana, opiates, cocaine and other drugs. This is one of many examples of a rising trend among private high schools searching for new ways to discourage drug use among teens. Proponents of random […]

Read the full article →

I’m There: Dawn Hahn

May 9, 2016 We're There

Promoting unified processes and championing the development of our laboratory personnel are critical components of building a world-class laboratory. As Director of Laboratory Operations for our Kansas toxicology laboratory, Dawn Hahn is committed to actively providing insight to reinforce the knowledge of our staff and to positively impact the integrity of our laboratory operations. Dawn’s commitment to her […]

Read the full article →

Three Steps to Paperless Drug Testing

April 29, 2016 eCCF

There are many reasons why to transition to paperless drug testing including the Final Rule published by the U.S. Department of Transportation that allows employers, collectors, laboratories and Medical Review Officers  to use electronic Custody and Control Forms, or eCCFs, for their regulated drug testing programs. Benefits include the elimination of inventory management and storage of […]

Read the full article →

Honoring Our Lab Technicians

April 25, 2016 Industry News

The core of our company revolves around providing accurate laboratory testing for our customers. This week, Quest Diagnostics and other lab-driven healthcare companies celebrate our hard-working laboratory technicians during Lab Week. In the United States, there are more than 300,000 medical laboratory professionals who come to work every day and provide results that make a […]

Read the full article →

Refining our Synthetic Cannabinoids Panel

April 18, 2016 Synthetic Drugs

Synthetic cannabinoids (also known as “K2” or “Spice”) mimic the main psychoactive ingredient, Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), found in marijuana. They do not contain cannabis but can produce a euphoric, hallucinatory effect anywhere between four and fifty times more potent than the THC found in marijuana. Data collected from emergency room visits and poison control centers reveals […]

Read the full article →

Does Workplace Drug Testing Work?

April 15, 2016 Industry News

As marijuana becomes more widely accepted, some are questioning if workplace drug testing for marijuana and other illicit drugs is appropriate or even necessary. Some argue that the so-called “war on drugs” is over and, therefore, drug testing provides no value. Yet, the reality is that there is a wealth of empirical research conducted by […]

Read the full article →

Painkiller Abuse and the Workplace

April 13, 2016 Industry News

“A Hidden Epidemic” was the cover story in last month’s issue of HR magazine. The article discusses the enormous toll prescription painkiller abuse is taking on the workplace. Author Dori Meinert interviewed several human resources professionals to gain perspective on why employees are grappling with addiction. Many employees may not seek help because they fear […]

Read the full article →