Or03-3strategies of drug prevention in the workplace: an international overview of drug testing and employee assistance programs

Drug testing in the workplace is not universal, and is regulated by various governmental agencies at the federal, state and municipal levels, as well as by various industries. Safety-sensitive occupations are typically targeted, and various industries and agencies have differing drug-testing protocols. In the United States, drug testing is highly structured and much of it falls under the purview of a Presidential Executive Order issued in 1986, and subsequent legislation, establishing a drug-free workplace. A Medical Review Officer (MRO) resolves questionable false-negative and false-positive tests. In European Union countries, drug testing is much less uniform, as attitudes to workplace drug problems are quite variable with no standard approach. While illicit drug use spurred widespread drug testing in the U.S., legitimately prescribed medications which may impact safety in the workplace are a growing issue which has not yet been fully addressed. Many companies establish Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs), which are designed to help businesses address productivity issues by providing various services to behaviourally-affected employees to alleviate and resolve issues, including substance abuse, with their job performance. It is easier to evaluate the effectiveness of the U.S. method, due to its structure, than to assess the varied European approach.

Author: Smith DE. ;Full Source: Alcohol. 2014 Sep;49 Suppl 1:i40. doi: 10.1093/alcalc/agu053.13. ;