DOT to Expand Federal Drug Testing Panel
Updates and Changes to Drug Testing
The DOT is amending its Federal drug testing program to include four Schedule II Opioid drugs. This is sometimes collectively referred to as “Expanded Opiates” testing. The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) document is a revision of the Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Urine Drug Testing Programs (MG). The revisions will go into effect in just a few months, October 1, 2017.
Summary of Changes
The expanded drug testing panel includes the opioids hydrocodone, hydromorphone, oxycodone, and oxymorphone. It also adds MDA as an initial test analyte and removes MDEA as a confirmation analyte.
These changes are meant to agree with the revised Mandatory Guidelines established by the US DHHS for federal urine drug testing programs. The requirement for employers and third party administrators to submit blind specimens is also to be removed.
Frequent Questions Addressed
Do I change our Employer DOT policy and procedures now?
No. There is still a lot to be done by the DOT before the proposed changes are implemented. The final regulation changes (after but comments and revision) will go into effect October first or later.
Can I start testing our DOT employees for these expanded opiates now?
No. DOT testing must continue to be done in accordance with DOT requirements until the new rules go into effect.