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BioTechScreening Posting Page
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Laboratory Testing

The screening of urine was primarily conducted at offsite laboratories during the 1990s. With the dramatic increase in the accuracy and reliability of onsite drug tests, however, they have supplanted laboratories and become the screening method of choice due their accuracy and a myriad of other advantages:

Often referred to as immediate VS delayed result testing, onsite enable you to know within a couple of minutes if the person before you is drug-free. In criminal justice the process used to be that once a result was received from a laboratory (several days to a couple of weeks) the donor must be tracked down and confronted. Frequently the donor would deny usage and the first order of business was penetrating that denial which we know can be a difficult and time consuming process.

Onsite testing inevitably yields a high percentage of admissions enabling the tester to take immediate action as there is no denial to penetrate. This is generally better for the donor as well in that the sooner in the cycle of addiction that drug usage is detected, the less severe the addiction. It also adds measurably to community protection in that crime supporting criminal behavior is not allowed to continue until the donor has been confronted. In many situations admissions obviate the need for confirmatory testing which will always be the most expensive part of any testing program. Many prefer admissions to confirmations in that the donor admits usage and a curative course of action may be established. It also enables the tester to reward and support a donor’s sobriety, the positive role of drug testing.

Rapid result testing also provides a far higher level of deterrence in that the donor realizes that they will be held responsible immediately for a positive result. With delayed result testing donors are able to delude themselves into thinking the drug will degrade in the urine by the time it is tested or it may be lost in transit, etc. Lab screening, because it incurs the shipping cost to the lab, is generally more expensive than onsite screens. One advantage to lab screens is that the specimen is interpreted by an instrument, not the human eye, thus removing the issue of subjectivity.

Confirmatory testing is only conducted at a laboratory by either GC/MS or LC/MS/MS, a crucial component for any drug testing process. We at Biotech Screening have established partnerships with both a SAMHSA (Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration) Certified lab as well as a CAP (College of American Pathologists) certified lab for confirmatory testing as well as testing for EtG, Spice, Bath Salts and 6-AM.
Labs that hold one of these two certifications are held to the highest standards for accuracy and are a good fit with any effective drug-testing program.

At this time only a laboratory can test for Bath Salts, EtG and 6-AM. EtG (Ethylglucuronide) measures a biomarker in urine and is clearly the best means to test for ethanol. We prefer testing at a higher level for EtG and even though this may not provide as long a window of detection, it helps eliminate legitimate means of alcohol absorption, such as hand creams, etc., or incidental exposure. There are literally thousands of items which contain ethanol which one may be exposed to on any given day and this test is additive.

6-Acetylmorphine (6AM) is a test is to detect heroin use. 6-Acetylmorphine is excreted in the urine as a consequence of heroin use; other opiates do not cause excretion of this metabolite. In order to be effective, however, it must be very recent usage with a high concentration of heroin still in the urine. If a donor has a past history of heroin usage and produces a specimen positive for opiates, it may be a prudent expenditure to call the laboratory, determine the nanogram level of the specimen and then decide whether to have a 6-AM test conducted.

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by: BioTechScreening


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