Drug Testing. Lecture 13. What to Expect in this Lecture. What is drug testing? History of drug desting Methods of drug testing Effectiveness of drug testing Controversies surrounding drug testing. What is Drug Testing?.
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Drug Testing Lecture 13
What to Expect in this Lecture • What is drug testing? • History of drug desting • Methods of drug testing • Effectiveness of drug testing • Controversies surrounding drug testing
What is Drug Testing? Drug testing generically refers to the analysis of bodily tissues or fluids to determine the presence and/or concentration of a particular substance • Drug Testing vs. Drug Screening • Drug Screening is the qualitative analysis of body tissue or fluid to broadly determine the presence of particular substances • Drug Testingin the most precise sense refers to quantitative analysis of bodily tissues or fluids to determine concentrations of particular substances
History of Drug Testing • First drug testing was for alcohol during prohibition • Another early use of drug testing was in sports • First used to detect if horses were being given morphine thought to be a performance enhancer • Human athletes were being tested by the 1960’s • The military began testing during the Vietnam war. However systematic testing did not begin until the 1980’s • Private industry began drug testing of employees in the 1980’s • Practice became widespread following Executive Order #12564, by President Reagan, establishing Drug Free Work Place
Methods of Drug Testing • Breath tests • Used exclusively for alcohol • Least invasive • Blood, urine, saliva test • Testing of these 3 body fluids involves same basic technology • Problems identified with all 3 • Hair analysis • Can preserve record of drug use for an indefinite period of time • Also because of the way hair grows, can determine approximately when drugs were taken (within about a month) • More precise determination, however, is not possible
Effectiveness of Drug Testing • Difficult to evaluate effectiveness because of multiplicity of goals of drug testing: • Identification of drug users in an organization • Deterrence of drug use • Improvement of worker morale • Increased productivity • Decreased workplace accidents • Overall cost-effectiveness
Controversies Surrounding Drug Testing • Reliability of Drug Testing • Great potential for false positives, particularly on EMIT • Most drug tests do not measure current level of drug use/impairment • Constitutionality of Drug Testing • Violation of Fourth Amendment protections? • Violation of Fifth Amendment protections? • Violation of Fourteenth Amendment protections?