Creating a court order or agreement for drug testing can be a meticulous and sometimes not an easy task. A fully detailed well-prepared court order will significantly ensure proper compliance for donors or parties in legal cases, and at the same time will avoid confusion and waste of time in future mediations or hearings. Here are some important points to consider:
Attorneys should get familiar with the testing facility of their choice. A simple way to start is by visiting the company’s website and understand types of testing, procedures, pricing, and expected or possible future expenses not limited to non-compliance letter, testimonials, laboratory & MRO expertise, document handling cost, etc., a good design website will provide answer to most of your questions right on their site.
Understanding the 3 components of Drug Testing process:
1-The collection agency, is the party responsible to obtain a specimen from the donor, maintain chain of custody of the collection, ship specimens to the laboratory and follow any instructions, guidelines on court orders or agreements, and not limited to final reporting.
2-The Laboratory is responsible to run the type of test. (UA, oral, hair, fingernail).
3-The MRO (Medical Review Officer) is the party responsible to go over a positive result after a report from the Laboratory. They also communicate with the donor in regards of verification of prescription medications or a possible exposure that could have caused a positive result.
*in some cases donor may waive MRO or the court order or agreement may request “RAW” results prior to MRO review. MRO final reports will not show levels but positive or negative results.
Establish on court order the type of testing(s) appropriate for the donor:
-Urinalysis drug test Detection: 2-3 days Adulteration: Easy
-Saliva or Oral drug test Detection: 1-2 days Adulteration: Difficult
-Hair drug test (head) Detection: Up to 3 days Adulteration: Moderate
–Fingernail drug test Detection: Up to 180 days Adulteration: Difficult
*Body hair can be used for testing. However, while body hair is generally acknowledged as representing a more distant time frame than head hair, the approximate time period cannot be identified due to the high variability of growth rates.
*Urinalysis allows a higher level of adulteration from ingestion, dilution or the availability of devices that can fool even experienced collectors and especially when non-direct observation is required, yet urinalysis and specially Oral Fluid(Saliva) should be considered as a random alternative and without notice to donor from the type of testing in conjunction with other type of testing such as hair and fingernails.
*it’s recommended to start and end the testing period with a hair or nail drug test (when the donor has sufficient amount of samples), to establish the start and endpoint of testing, and on the same start day a preferable oral drug test, as the benefits of oral testing are more reliable in terms of adulteration and tamper, and where no same-gender observation is needed it at the time of collection.
*For testing involving hair or nail samples, it must be noted that donors must keep a minimum of 1 1/2 inches of hair or enough body hair, and/or enough fingernails length to be collected for testing (some scenarios donors must refrain from hair cuts or nail clippings).
The duration and frequency of testing:
The duration or period of the testing specifying the exact start date and termination date of testing and frequency, (twice a week, weekly, biweekly, monthly etc.) and most important the window for the donor to report to the collection agency after the request has been made, (same day, between 2 hours, 4 hours, etc., or no more than 24 hours it’s recommended).
* On a random basis for drug testing, it is recommended to allow the collection facility to handle and call the donor following the court order or agreement frequency, not limited to weekends and holidays, but also upon collectors availability and collection site schedule.
*It is important to make donors aware in the court order or agreement, to communicate with the collection facility in the event of unavailability to test for medical reason, after a request for testing was made, where donor must provide proof from doctor’s office, or a hospital paperwork, where the medical care was given, as well of the donor travels outside the testing facility area and where donor must notify at least 24 hours in advance to all parties in the court order or agreement, including providing acceptable proof of travel and agreeing that upon the return from travel donor must report to the collection agency for testing in between reasonable time.
Who will receive reports:
The court order or agreement must specify the parties allowed to receive results including the full name, address and most important e-mail address of each party involved in the case for communication and reports to be sent out.
Collection facilities, laboratories and MRO’s will not disclose any information just to anyone unless stated in the court order or agreement.
Please include who will be responsible for the testing fees, including the initial cost of test, Non-compliance letters, Medical review officer fees(when need it), interpretation of test fees, court testimony fees. etc. Most collection sites require a credit card on file in the event of future services. it’s recommended that the requesting party or petitioner becomes responsible for any due or future payments and to assure the donor compliance, as many donors simply will avoid testing claiming the inability to pay for the initial test fees or any future services.
The Consequences of non-compliance of testing and remedies:
Attorneys must be very specific of the consequences of non-compliance and not limited to make donors aware of keeping appropriate length of body specimen for collections, and (or) to make donor’s clear of their action and consequences of failing a drug test request, for example, and not limited longer period of testing or any other conditions and limitations agreed.
Once you have implemented these important points on you court order or agreement it would be beneficial to all parties involved, and as a courtesy prior to file a court order or an agreement, to email a copy of the proposed document to the collection agency to ensure availability and proper fit of the case or any other request you may have in particular case.
Note:*articles on this blog/newsletter are for informational purposes only , articles does not represent any opinion of our company in regards of the subject and do not constitute medical advice,source article from partner’s laboratories, information not guarantee in the events of errors.