Drugs and alcohol. Alcohol and drugs . . . Both substances can impair a person’s mental and physical abilities, cause long-term health issues, and create unsafe situations. For these and many other reasons, it is common for employers to establish a drug-free workplace testing program that includes both drug and alcohol testing. Concerns regarding substance abuse vary from company to company, so many of these screening services are quite flexible and allow the employer to create a customized testing program that fits the company’s goals and the industry’s requirements. One common question many employers and employees have regarding workplace alcohol and drug tests is, “Does alcohol show up in a drug test?” Let’s find out . . .
Does Alcohol Show Up in a Drug Test?
Does alcohol show up in a drug test? Although alcohol does not appear in standard drug tests, it can be included in a drug test if specifically requested. So if you’re interested in testing employees for both drugs and alcohol, simply consult with your screening service to determine what type of program best meets your needs.
How Can an Employer Test for Alcohol in the Workplace?
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) recommends testing for at least five drugs (amphetamines, THC, cocaine, opiates, and phencyclidine) as well as alcohol. Although a standard drug test does not evaluate the presence of alcohol in a person’s system, many companies do include alcohol in their testing policy, using a breath or saliva test. In addition, with the growing use and misuse of prescription medications, many companies are requesting their drug test include additional drugs beyond the standard five mentioned above (e.g., adding synthetic opiates and ecstasy).