Employers commonly require job candidates to submit to pre-employment physical exams, particularly for jobs that involve public safety. Companies usually list drug and alcohol screenings in the job posting or the physical application. Sometimes employers also require tests during the course of employment. Here are more details about what to expect from drug testing.
What You Should Know About Pre-Employment Drug Screening
- drug testing laws differ in each state
- employers may require random drug testing at any time
- applicants and employees concerned about their rights should consult their state labor department
When are Employer’s Drug Tests Needed?
Not all employers are required by law to test applicants for pre-employment physical exams. Industries such as transportation, medical and aviation have strict policies about drug screening. Some states have certain requirements as to when employers can conduct drug testing and the type of screening that is allowed. Pre-employment drug screening usually happens after an employer has made a job offer, as official hiring depends on test results.
What Drugs Do Employers Typically Test for?
Different employers may test for specific drugs. Candidates who use prescription medication need to disclose this information upfront, since it can lead to a failed drug test. Employers, however, may allow certain drugs if they are prescribed by a doctor. Testing is usually for the following intoxicants, based on guidelines from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA):
- amphetamines such as meth and crank
- cocaine and crack
- opiates such as heroin and morphine
- phencyclidine (PCP)
- THC such as marijuana and hash
How Long Does the Process Take to Get Results?
The process depends on the type of drug testing, whether it’s a urine, blood, breath, saliva, hair or sweat test. Each test can be done in minutes. Negative results are usually known within a few hours, whereas positive results may require further testing.
Employers may conduct testing when they choose, as explained in the company guidelines. If you need to conduct employer drug testing, visit us at 8-2-8 Urgent Care in Oceanside, California or call us at (760) 216-6253.