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the rule has final approval, DOT will then start their process of incorporating oral fluid testing into 49 CFR Part 40. Tere are both challenges and


opportunities for drug testing industry professionals and employers in regards to oral fluid testing. Te oral fluid drug test is marketed as a product that may be used by the employer to collect the specimen at the employer’s place of business. Oſten employers engage mobile collectors to come to the business and collect oral fluid specimens from multiple employees at one time. Most mobile collectors will perform oral fluid collections. Te challenge occurs when sending applicants and employees to fixed collection facilities for oral fluid specimen collections, as most third party collection sites are not offering oral fluid drug test collections at this time. An employer using a specific collection site on a regular basis may request that a PSC or third party collection site stock oral fluid collection devices and perform oral fluid collections. For many small- and medium- sized employers that do not want to be in the business of collecting specimens, an oral fluid testing collection vendor is currently difficult to find, particularly when testing applicants or employees located in multiple areas across the United States. It is important to recognize that the


above referenced HHS proposal referenced above also included proposed changes in its mandatory guidelines for urine testing. Te proposed changes would allow federal executive branch agencies to test for additional Schedule II prescription medications (oxycodone, oxymorphone, hydrocodone, and hydromorphone). Te rule is also going through the HHS process for final approval. Testing for expanded opiates is particularly important in light of America’s growing opioid addiction epidemic. It is good to see that the Obama Administration has made a priority of addressing the startling rise in use of opioids, particularly prescription painkillers like OxyContin, which oſten lead to the use of harder, illegal drugs,


46 datia focus


such as heroin. President Obama also participated in the National Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit in Atlanta, GA. held on March 29, 2016. Not only is the industry and the DOT


moving to test additional drugs and alternative specimen types, it is also moving from paper to Electronic (eCCF). So where do we stand on electronic CCF (eCCF) for DOT? Labs are currently being reviewed for approval to begin using eCCFs for DOT urine drug testing. Once approved, the labs will have to coordinate with the National Laboratory Certification Program (NLCP) to complete inspections of their laboratories in order to begin using electronic CCFs for DOT-regulated testing. As the laboratories receive their approvals, they will enable their customers to begin using eCCFs for customers to begin utilizing them. Alere Toxicology’s lab in Gretna, LA. has final approval for DOT eCCF. Others labs, as of May 1, 2016, are in the process of undergoing the required inspections for geting final approval. It is anticipated that by the end of the year, there will be four to five SAMHSA certified labs offering eCCF forms for DOT drug testing. So how is the state of the industry? It


is very good and there are many changes and challenges to come. Legalization of marijuana and possibly other drugs, along with an employer’s rights to test, are issues that needs to be monitored and as an industry along with each industry member we must be proactive in employer rights to test. Look to DATIA for information and resources to help you work with the industry to address these challenges. Also look also to DATIA to learn about final laboratory approvals for electronic custody and control forms, oral fluid testing final approval for DOT testing, expanded opiates final approval for DOT testing, hair testing for DOT covered employees and of course other changes and updates for our industry. I wrote an article in early 2008 for the


inaugural issue of the DATIA focus magazine entitled, “What a Great Time to be in the Drug


Testing Industry!” Te economy was starting to struggle but the drug testing business was still strong. Litle did I know that we would be in for some tough times with the financial crisis that peaked later that year. Te number of workplace specimens going to the labs for testing decreased for the first time ever. Te good news is that today the industry is again booming and both DOT and non-DOT testing continue to be increasing. Actually, it is non-DOT testing that is fueling the growth of the drug testing industry. In contrast to the early years of drug testing, the growth segment of the industry are the small- and medium-sized non-regulated employers. I am excited about the future of the drug testing industry. Business is up. Tere is increased activity in mergers and acquisitions; background screening is also growing in leaps and bounds plus alternative specimen testing continues to grow. If you are a service agent and are not seeing an increase in the market for non-DOT drug screening, it is time to review your marketing programs because our industry continues to grow and so should you. I am happy to say, once again, “What a Great Time to be in the Drug Testing Industry!” ❚


References 1


Results from the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health—http://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/ NSDUH-FRR1-2014/NSDUH-FRR1-2014.pdf


2


Drugs of Abuse Testing Market—Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2013–2018 http://www.transparencymarketresearch.com/drugs- abuse-testing-market.html


Joe Reilly entered the world of drug testing in 1993. He is well known throughout the industry and considered an expert on workplace drug testing issues. Joe served for nine years on


the DATIA Board of Directors and served as Chairman of the Board from 2004–2008. After a few years of retirement, Joe is again serving again on the DATIA Board and works with the leadership of several drug testing companies including National Drug Screening, Joe Reilly & Associates and USA Mobile Drug Testing.


summer 2016


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