When it comes to drug testing your employees, your options go beyond choosing which drugs to test for. How you decide to test is a key factor as well. There are three main types of drug tests (urine, hair, and saliva). Each type has its own unique advantages and disadvantages. As an employer, it’s crucial to weigh the pros and cons of each type to decide which one is ideal for your business. Luckily, we can help make that easier for you.
Urine tests are the most common type to administer. This is the only option that’s approved for federal drug test collections. The specimen collection process is easy and simple. With standard testing, the sample is sent to a lab for analysis. However, instant urine tests are quickly becoming a more popular option for employers. This type of testing detects a wide range of recently used drugs.
While urine tests are not 100% infallible, several safeguards exist to ensure the integrity of the results. The temperature of the specimen is read during the collection to ensure the urine is not too cool nor too warm to be authentic. Moreover, the lab ensures that it is of the appropriate pH and creatine levels. Urine testing is your ideal option for screening prospective employees.
Hair Follicle Testing
Hair follicle testing is the optimal method to detect drug use over a longer time period. It can detect traces within the 90 days preceding the test.
Around 100 strands of hair are taken from as close to the scalp as possible, then the hair is placed in a foil package and sent to a lab. If the donor does not have hair on their head, a sample can instead be taken from their face, armpit or back. The collector is present during the entire process, which makes fabrication or substitution of the specimen nearly impossible.
Saliva testing is debatably the easiest method. Unfortunately, it has the shortest time span for detection. A prime example is THC, which has a detection span of 8 to 12 hours. Other substances such as cocaine and heroin will show traces for up to 48 hours.
Due to these narrow windows, saliva tests are not ideal for conducting background checks. We recommend this method to determine recent drug use. It only takes a few minutes to receive results from instant tests, making them optimal for random drug tests.
At Alliance 2020, we offer all three of these types. Located in downtown Renton, we service the entire greater Seattle area. For inquiries about our services, please give us a call at (425) 271-8065. We will connect you with a sales representative who can help you explore the best options for your needs.