•Substance abuse in the workplace while on duty or even before coming to work are common and are increasing.
•Employers have to consider the individual and the legal framework as well as to create a safe environment and maintain productivity.
•The National Drug Master plan of 2006-2011 identifies the following groups are more at risk of for substance abuse: artist, medical personnel, farm workers and transport industry workers.
•The price companies pay is in the low morale, absenteeism, illnesses, accidents as well as the risk of theft to support the habit.
WHAT IS THE EMPLOYER’S RESPONSIBILITY FOR DRUG TESTING?
•Have an effective alcohol and drug abuse programme in place and must consist of the following components:
*Substance abuse policy
*Employee assistance program
*Employers are legally obligated to facilitate counselling and rehabilitation
WHAT TO CONSIDER AND DISCLOSE WHEN SUBJECTING AN EMPLOYEE TO DRUG TESTS.
•Employees must give consent- e.g. as part of employment contract and or policy
•Test *all* employees
•Always consider the employees privacy e.g. same gender searches
•Which drugs will be tested for?
•Where and when will the tests take place?
•What type of tests will be performed? e.g. urine testing
•What are the consequences of a non negative result?
•Ampath’s medical surveillance guideline
•Substance abuse in the workplace- An aide memoire to health Surveillance. First do no harm –
Dr N Lutchman – Ampath, Chemical Pathologist, email: email@example.com
Lisa Liebenberg – Ampath, AAT OH Manager, email: firstname.lastname@example.org