Comply First, Contest Later – What You Need To Do When You Test (Urine)
Written by Lucas Kibby, CleanFleet
If the company you work for has a drug testing program, eventually you will face a drug test one reason or another. Going in for a drug test is never a willing part of your day. However, understanding the collection process, why you are testing, and complying with the collector are vital to ensuring your rights are protected. These tests can be done at a collection office or on your employer’s site and the process is the same.
If you have never given a urine sample the collection process will be a foreign experience. Let’s walk through the process so you know what you need to do when you come in to test.
Creating a Secure and Private Collection Site
The collector creates a secure collection site by restricting access to the site to only those being tested, securing all water sources and placing blue dye in any standing water (toilet), and removing or securing all cleaning products/fluids at the collection site.
The collector will give you privacy to provide a urine specimen by standing outside the door or stall but will be listening to you providing the sample and ensuring the specimen is given in a reasonable time.
If there is an issue of attempted adulteration or substitution of a specimen or any situation where general questions of validity arise, like an unusual temperature, the collector may be required to watch the process of the employee giving the urine specimen.
Verifying your Identity
The first step in the collection process starts with the collector verifying your identity by asking for a current valid photo ID (such as driver’s license, passport, employer issued picture ID, etc.).
Preparing and Giving the Urine Specimen
The collector will ask you to remove any unnecessary garments and empty your pockets (you may retain your wallet). After instructing you to wash and dry your hands, the collector will select or have you select a sealed collection kit and open it in your presence.
The collector will then leave and shut the door after instructing you to provide a specimen (a minimum of 45 mL is best practice and mandated by DOT federal regulations) of your urine into a collection container.
After Giving the Urine Specimen
When you are done, the collector will check the temperature and color of the urine (checking for adulteration of the specimen). In your presence, the collector will pour the urine into two separate bottles, seal them with tamper-evident tape, and then ask you to sign the seals after they have been placed on the bottles.
Remember: Neither you nor the collector should let the specimen out of your sight until it has been poured into two separate bottles and sealed. If the collector believes alteration of the specimen may have happened, the collector will follow your company’s protocol on how to proceed.
Completing the Forms
The collector will then ask you to provide your name, date of birth, and daytime and evening phone numbers on the Medical Review Officer copy of the Federal Drug Testing Custody and Control Form (CCF).
Next, collector will complete necessary documentation on the Test Facility copy of the CCF to demonstrate the chain of custody (i.e. handling) of the specimen. Then collector will give you the Employee Copy of the CCF and may suggest you list any prescription and over-the-counter medications you may be taking on the back of your copy of the CCF (this may serve as a reminder for you in the event the MRO calls you to discuss your test results).
The last step for the collector is to package and ship both sealed bottles and completed CCF to a U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) certified testing laboratory as quickly as possible.
Not enough urine specimen?
If you are unable to provide enough urine for the lab to analyze (45 mL of urine for DOT regulations) on the first attempt, the time will be noted, and you will be required to remain in the testing area under the supervision of the collection site personnel, their supervisor, or a representative from your company. Leaving the testing area without authorization may be considered a refusal to test.
Next, you will be urged to drink up to 40 oz. of fluid, distributed reasonably over a period of up to three hours and asked to provide a new specimen (into a new collection container).
If you do not provide a sufficient specimen within three hours, you must obtain a medical evaluation within five days to determine if there is an acceptable medical reason for not being able to provide a specimen. If it is determined that there is no legitimate physiological or pre-existing psychological reason for not providing a urine specimen, it will be considered a refusal to test if testing under the DOT.
To understand the full process after giving your urine sample, see the picture below to see what happens next.