Drug and Alcohol Testing Courses: All You Need to Know
19 July, 2023
Drug and alcohol testing courses are programs for training individuals on how to conduct substance screening or detection. The course covers various methods of drug and alcohol testing, including urine, oral fluid, and breathalysers. In addition, it provides the knowledge and skills needed for equipment preparation and specimen collection. The course and training materials follow Australian Standards and legislation. Companies employing these tests ensure the services they receive are reliable and compliant with standard practices.
The need for drug and alcohol testing has been increasing over the years in many industries. It is mainly because of substance-related use that leads to accidents and injuries. Moreover, it also affects productivity and the safety of other employees. Therefore, proactive measures help control and manage these risks. This article will cover what to expect in the course, types of drug and alcohol testing, and procedures.
Overview of Drug and Alcohol Testing Courses
Drug and alcohol testing courses in Australia are required for anyone who wants to work in the testing industry. Accredited programs like HLTPAT005 follow national guidelines and standards. The training offers an introduction to the relevant regulations governing workplace testing. This ensures that collectors and technicians follow the correct procedures consistently across all industries.
Aside from theoretical knowledge, the course covers the sample collection process, chain of custody, equipment maintenance and calibration, and reporting of results. Moreover, the program includes information on drug recognition, signs of intoxication, and proper breathalyser operation. Evaluation of the course includes aptitude demonstration, such as preparing the sample for technical analysis.
At the end of the program, the individual may be able to interpret the results and deal with safety issues. It also provides legal considerations when administering tests, such as the use of consent forms and privacy legislation. Therefore, it covers a broad range of topics and skills applicable to the workplace and related fields.
Benefits of Taking These Courses
- Learn basic knowledge of drug and alcohol use and their effects on the body.
- Enhanced skills in recognising signs and symptoms of substance abuse.
- Understanding of drug and alcohol testing procedures.
- Ability to administer on-site testing accurately, including sample collection.
- Follow the proper chain of custody to prevent sample contamination and false-positive results. It also includes preparing reports and documentation required for legal purposes.
- Know the responsibilities of a collector. Handle objections and non-compliance, such as refusal to undergo testing.
- Awareness of legal and ethical considerations.
- Maintain and calibrate equipment.
- Work in various industries, such as workplace and forensic testing and health care environments.
Types of Drug and Alcohol Testing Courses
Becoming an accredited collector in Australia requires passing the HLTPAT005 course. Moreover, drug and alcohol testing courses may be categorised into On-site Drug Screening (OSD) and Laboratory Drug Testing Technician (LDTT) programs. The procedures for each type differ due to the nature of the tests, such as location and equipment used.
In on-site drug screening, a testing agency provides a mobile laboratory or set-up near a workplace. It ensures a sanitary collection centre and testing equipment. The course covers rapid screening technology, such as urine or saliva test kits. It provides the skills to set up and manage routine testing as well. This program is suitable for companies that need quick analysis and results.
The laboratory drug testing technician unit involves advanced skills in examining biological specimens. It is intended for those who will oversee laboratory testing and interpret results accurately. Furthermore, a doctor undertakes specialist training to become a Medical Review Officer. This profession is vital to evaluating initial tests and confirming if the samples are positive for drug and alcohol use.
The standard test methods include urine, oral fluid, blood, and breath testing. A urine drug test can trace a wide range of substances for up to 48 hours. Meanwhile, an oral fluid test involves a mouth swab. Screening for these tests involves utilising urine test cups or a collection stick and analysing the sample using immunoassays.
On the other hand, a blood test requires a trained collector to draw blood from the person. It is much more accurate than urine and oral fluid tests but invasive. Lastly, the breathalyser test provides a rapid and non-invasive method of detecting ethanol and measuring Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC).
Procedures Involved in Drug and Alcohol Testing Courses
Drug and alcohol testing courses require an assessment test before completion. The learning program is divided into theory and practical components. After learning the basics, the course moves on to sample collection and handling. Students learn how to collect specimens via urine or oral fluid and operate a breathalyser. They must ensure that the sample is valid and not tampered with.
Operating a breathalyser is straightforward. The device is ready to use after pressing the power button. The subject must take a deep breath and blow steadily to the mouthpiece for five seconds or longer. The breathalyser automatically processes the breath sample and displays the BAC results in seconds. The administrator must ensure the subject does not eat or drink anything before the test.
The course also covers the proper way of packaging the sample for transport and documenting the chain of custody. It involves labelling the specimen correctly and preserving the sample’s integrity. Moreover, participants will learn to interpret results, such as False-Positive and False-Negative findings.
Successful Completion Requirements
Completing the program requires passing written and practical tests to obtain accreditation. It involves the participant demonstrating correct specimen collection techniques and following set protocols. The trainee must be able to show aptitude in performing mandatory tasks, such as complying with a client’s workplace policy and other applicable standards.
An accredited administrator will oversee the simulation. The successful completion of requirements shows competency to perform drug and alcohol testing in the workplace. These skills are vital to real-life applications. Finally, all course information and training are crucial for getting accurate results and keeping the administrator from legal action.
Drug and alcohol testing courses are programs for individuals who wish to become certified in specimen collection. It covers basic theories and knowledge and advanced skills in handling specimens for drugs. The course covers methods for urine, oral fluid, blood, and breath testing. It also teaches the handling and packaging the specimens to ensure a proper chain of custody. The programs focus on on-site testing and laboratory drug testing.
The course includes practical components, such as using screening test kits like urine drug test cups and breathalysers. Successful completion requires passing written and practical assessments. The trainees must demonstrate their competency to follow set protocols. There are various programs available such as distance learning and hands-on training. Finally, getting accreditation for substance screening is essential in any professional setting. Employers make sure that the drug and alcohol testing services they receive are compliant with legal standards.