With the prevalence of drug and alcohol abuse in workplaces, companies nowadays tend to rely heavily on drug and alcohol screening to help maintain the safety and productivity of their employees. Drug and alcohol screening is also a form of risk management because drug use and alcohol consumption can have adverse effects. Providing frequent and accurate tests can help prevent workers from showing up with impairments coming from substance use. Substance use can impact an individual’s judgment, coordination, and motor function, which can easily affect one’s safety (could be more prone to accidents) and productivity in the workplace. Despite increasing the frequency of tests, companies should still ensure that the guidelines and procedures are strictly followed, especially during drug and alcohol screening on site. In addition, highly effective devices like the workplace breathalysers from Breathalysers Australia can significantly help with workplace alcohol testing.
Australian Standards for Drug and Alcohol Screening On Site
The main reason for drug and alcohol screening is workplace health and safety. Employers are legally required to provide their employees with a safe working environment. Consequently, employees should understand and agree to the policies of the company or business. Moreover, procedures and guidelines for drug and alcohol screening on site exist mainly to provide a reliable, comfortable, and safe testing method.
Australian Standards for drug and alcohol screening on site:
- AS/NZS 4308:2008 – urinary drug screening
- AS/NZS 4760:2019 – oral fluid drug screening
- Australian Quality Training Framework (AQTF) – certified urine and oral fluid/ saliva collection
- Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GCMS) – confirmatory testing by a registered laboratory of non-negative instant results
In addition, sample collectors will need the HLTPAT005 – “Collect specimens for drugs of abuse testing certification”. It is to ensure that the drug and alcohol screening on site guidelines are accurate and trustworthy. Furthermore, they are well trained to prepare the site for testing, orient the employee, and use proper sample storage methods.
Drug and Alcohol Screening On Site: Workplace Drug and Alcohol Policy
In order for drug and alcohol screening on site to be effective, companies should implement a comprehensive workplace policy for drugs and alcohol. This policy should include clear and concise requirements that the company needs from their employees. Moreover, it should outline the goals of the company concerning drug and alcohol use and abuse in the workplace. The primary goal should always be to maintain a safe and healthy working environment for everybody in the workplace. Needless to say, both employers and employees should be working together for this to happen. However, it is the employer’s responsibility to convey the requirements properly for employees to oblige.
Subsequently, some employees may find drug and alcohol screening on site to be a breach of their privacy. It will help if employers define their testing methods as clearly as possible and ensure that employees understand and agree to them beforehand. As a guide, make sure that the workplace drug and alcohol policy answers the following questions:
- Who receives on site testing?
- When are the drug and alcohol tests given?
- Who will conduct the on site testing?
- What substances are the drug and alcohol tests looking for?
- Who pays for the drug and alcohol testing?
- How are the drug and alcohol tests made sure that they are accurate?
- What are the legal rights of both employers and employees?
- What happens when there is a positive test result?
Drug and Alcohol Screening On Site: Testing Methods, Sampling and Availability
The most common form of screening for drug usage is urine testing. This method may not be the most accurate available. It comes in second when compared to blood testing, but it is quicker to do and is still reliable. A mobile testing unit with certified individuals is able to provide accurate tests when called upon. During a urine drug screening on site, testers should ask employees if they are taking any prescription or over-the-counter drugs, as some might provide a false negative result. Next, employees would need to wash up, urinate, and collect the urine sample with a container. About one to two ounces of urine from the employee is the standard sampling amount. Lastly, the certified sample collector now marks the container with the proper information of the respective employee.
As for alcohol screening on site, the most cost-effective method is alcohol breath testing using breathalysers. A breathalyser is a device that analyses breath samples to determine their Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) level. The BAC level would define how intoxicated an individual is. Moreover, alcohol breath testing using breathalysers is quick and easy. An employee would only require to exhale into the breathalyser’s sterile tube (mouthpiece); then, the device would process the results almost instantaneously. Furthermore, there are now devices that are even more efficient for workplace alcohol breath testing. Breathalysers Australia offers a wide selection of BACtrack workplace breathalysers designed specifically for the work environment.
BACtrack Workplace Breath Testers at Breathalysers Australia
To aid in drug and alcohol screening on site, accurate and frequent alcohol breath testing is made more accessible with the help of a BACtrack workplace breathalyser. The BACtrack workplace breath testers at Breathalysers Australia use fuel cell sensors that have professional-grade accuracy. These sensors are able only to detect ethyl alcohol in breath samples. Hence, it ensures the results have less likelihood of false-positive readings.
Moreover, these devices also have a one-button operation feature. This feature enables quick and easy back-to-back alcohol breath testing. Furthermore, BACtrack breathalysers only take 10 to 15 seconds to process breath samples and show accurate BAC results. In addition, the devices have low power requirements, enabling up to 1,500 tests with just a single set of AA batteries. These results are consistent despite continuous usage. Thus, companies that require high-volume employee alcohol breath testing will be seamless and convenient with the use of BACtrack workplace breathalysers. Therefore, drug and alcohol screening on site is now more efficient with workplace breathalysers at Breathalysers Australia.
Most recommended workplace alcohol breath testers at Breathalysers Australia:
- BACtrack Mobile Gen2 – the ideal breathalyser for remote workplace alcohol testing to achieve high levels of accuracy and compliance.
- BACtrack S80 Pro Gen2 – the best breathalyser for commercial environments that require an accurate, consistent, and robust breath testing device.
- Alcovisor Mercury Touchscreen – the most suitable breathalyser for high throughput, high compliance workplace environments.
With mobile testing units and effective devices like the BACtrack workplace breathalysers, available at Breathalysers Australia, at a company’s disposal, more frequent and reliable drug and alcohol testing is easier to achieve. Moreover, the guidelines for drug and alcohol screening on site are essential to be able to maintain proper procedures. These preventive measures could undoubtedly help keep the safety and productivity of a company’s workforce by preventing drug or alcohol usage before, during, and after work.