With the prevalence of drug and alcohol use within society, there’s been a corresponding call by occupational safety experts and businesses to address the matter in a satisfactory way. In ‘high risk’ industries such aviation, mining and construction, the call to eliminate or reduce risks caused by intoxication or drug induced impairment is a very real health and safety concern of critical importance. To date, the most effective method (from both a deterrent and detection standpoint) is the workplace drug and alcohol testing program.
In many workplaces throughout the world, the traditional method for drug and alcohol testing consists of urine testing. However, with the advent of state-of-the-art technology and a more educative as opposed to punitive approach towards breaches of workplace protocol, less invasive methods of detection have increased in use: one such method being the saliva test.
The saliva test (also called an oral fluid or a mouth swab test), is an increasingly popular method of detection by many Unions and employees. A commonly cited reason for its preferred status is that its limited detection window (which only extends to very recent drug use), contrasts with traditional urine tests which can detect a history of drug use that reaches back for many weeks or even months in the case of cannabis. Another reason for the popularity of this methodology, is due to the simplicity of this new technology and to the much simpler, more cost-effective and comparatively easy to deploy method of implementation: as no advanced medical knowledge or urine testing units are required to collect samples, most staff can, in fact, competently manage their workplace drug and alcohol testing program without a nursing or medical qualification. However, most countries do require that authorised collectors receive accredited training.
Overall, some of the key advantages of the saliva drug test (to traditional forms of drug and alcohol detection methods) include:
- Simple application
- Procedures are less disruptive for normative workplace operations
- Screening results are obtained within minutes
- ‘Down time’ for employees is minimised
- Less resistance by unions and employees on the grounds of privacy invasion and intrusive detection methodology
- Only recent drug use or exposure is identified
- Cost-effective testing method
- Collection process is observed from start to finish: this prevents sample collections being tampered, diluted, substituted or adulterated
- Testing process can be conducted wherever necessary: from remote work sites to other places of employment, thereby causing minimal disruption to workplace business
- In most countries, the process is fully supported by laboratory confirmation of ‘presumptive positive’ results. In this way, employees are not required to provide additional samples for analysis.
For more information about the workplace saliva test, contact CMM Technology™ today on (+618) 9204 2500 or visit www.cmm.com.au. As a leading drug and alcohol testing supplier and professional service provider, they’re your first choice industry expert. Providing a comprehensive selection of quality saliva testing technology, you can be confident in receiving only the best available technology. Moreover, CMM Technology’s professional services (such as consultation, accredited training, online product training) provide additional expert support.
However, if you wish to receive an externally managed onsite testing service, talk to Mediscreen direct on 1300 79 70 40 or visit www.mediscreen.net.au. Mediscreen’s Team of professionals can tailor a cost competitive and professional program that fits your budget, business requirements and implements industry best practice methodologies. Mediscreen is the smart choice for your business, small or large.