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FAQ: Drug Testing at Work During COVID-19 Pandemic

Safework Laboratories COVID-19 FAQ

The COVID-19 pandemic is proving to be one of the biggest public health challenges in recent history. The highly infectious disease has already spread to more than 190 countries and territories, infecting nearly half a million people and killing tens of thousands in its first three months.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has asked individuals and organisations alike to follow necessary precautions to help stop the further spread of the coronavirus.

SafeWork Laboratories is answering the call for preventive measures against COVID-19. We have taken steps to keep both our workers and clients safe from the dreaded disease. Learn more about SWL’s coronavirus strategies in our FAQ.

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New standard released for oral fluid (saliva) workplace drug testing in AUS & NZ – UPDATED

drug testing saliva

Standards Australia and Standards New Zealand have come out with new guidelines regarding the collection of samples for an oral fluid drug test. Designated as AS/NZS 4760:2019, the standard outlines several changes to the requirements for accredited screening for signs of drug abuse found in saliva specimens.  

Read on to learn more about the new oral fluid standard. Find out how it is going to affect SafeWork Laboratories’ drug screening service for its clients.

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Can An Employee Refuse A Drug Test?

employee refuses drug test

So your employee has refused a drug test. You are probably thinking — is this even possible?

You’ve seen the figures: employee drug and alcohol use costs Australian businesses $6 billion per year in lost productivity. 

As an employer, you have every reason to perform drug and alcohol testing. This is true not just in high-risk industries such as construction, mining, transportation and aviation. But now your employee is refusing to take the drug test.

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How Drug and Alcohol Training Benefits Your Workplace

aod training

The strength of your company drug and alcohol policy lies in its proper application. Effective enforcement requires training, and lack of proper training is just as harmful as inconsistency. 

You can have the most well-written drug and alcohol policy guidelines, but if your managers and supervisors lack the proper training to effectively implement it, it’s just as bad as having no policy at all.

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Does Synthetic Urine Help an Employee Evade Drug Detection?

synthetic urine detection

With the growing number of illicit drug users in the country, the methods for evasion are continually evolving. As long as there are drug users, there are people who are actively trying to cheat the system of drug testing, from machines that clean urine or switching out positive urine with clean urine. 

Although not as prevalent in Australia as in the United States, the latest threat to drug tests is synthetic urine. When did this become available to drug users and can drug testing companies detect it?

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Drug use in Australia: Australians spend $9.3 billion on drugs each year

drug spending in Australia 2019

It appears Australians are not slowing down their spending on illicit drugs. Annual wastewater reports highlight just how much Australians spent in the last year on the purchase of illicit drugs.

This is the sixth report of its kind and it covers 58 wastewater treatment plants across Australia, including regional sites and cities. The wastewater is tested for 13 substances, and the results are very concerning.

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