Pre-Employment: Drug Testing

Pre Employment Testing

Drug Screenings The benefits of thorough pre-employment screening far outweigh any potential negatives. Employers have an obligation, legally as well as morally, to provide a safe work environment for all of their employees and drug screening goes a long way in providing a safe workplace. We’re going to discuss a few types of drug screenings and provide you with key information to help you decide what’s best for your organization. The vast majority of employers use these screenings prior to employment with a fair amount also testing either through random annual screenings or immediately following an incident of some type.

5-Panel Drug Test:

Drug tests come in the form of panels with each panel being a specific drug. The two main types of tests are 5-panel as well as 10-panel. In this section we’re going to look specifically at 5-panel drug screening, what it’s testing for as well as the process of the drug screen itself. 5-panel drug screening, which requires a urine sample, is the most commonly used by government agencies as well as organizations in the private sector.

  • Drugs Most Commonly Screened:
    • Marijuana
    • Cocaine
    • Amphetamines (including Methamphetamine)
    • Opiates
    • Phencyclidine (PCP)
  • Sample Collection:
    • Urine, Saliva and Blood are the most common samples collected by candidates, or employees, for screening. These types of samples are used to measure more recent drug use typically between 1 and 3 days. Testing of Hair Follicles is another option and can be used to measure drug use for much longer periods of time of 90 days and longer.

10-Panel Drug Test:

10-panel drug tests measure not only the typically screened illegal drugs covered by 5-panel tests but also for high levels of prescription drugs. The prescription drugs included in this type of screen includes those that have proven to be the most commonly abused.

  • Drugs Most Commonly Screened:
    • Marijuana
    • Cocaine
    • Amphetamines (including Methamphetamine)
    • Opiates
    • Phencyclidine (PCP)
    • Methadone
    • Barbituates
    • Benzodiazepines
    • Tricyclic Anti-Depressants
    • Oxycodone
  • Sample Collection:
    • As with the 5-panel test, there are several options for gathering samples. The most common form of 10-panel screening is by use of a urine sample. Many of the most popular testing kits include easy read-outs on the container for quick analysis of the results.

In conclusion, we highly recommend drug screening for your organization. As with all types of pre-employment screenings be sure to follow the federal and state laws in your particular industry.