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Drug Testing Policies At Selected Major Corporations

October 26, 1989|Clipboard researched by Susan Davis Greene / Los Angeles Times; Graphics by Doris Shields / Los Angeles Times

Concern over drug abuse in the workplace has prompted many of Orange County's major companies to implement some form of drug-testing policy. The policies range from pre-hire urinalysis for new employees to random on-the-job testing for employees.

The 10 substances which are are most frequently screened for are marijuana, cocaine, amphetamines, opiates, barbiturates, phenecyclidine (PCP), methaqualone (Qualuude), benzodiazepine (Valium), propoxyphine (Darvon) and alcohol.

Marijuana accounts for 80% of all positive results, cocaine for 10% to 15%. All of these substances remain in the body for three to five days, with the exception of marijuana. It may be detected for two weeks and, depending on the individual, perhaps as long as several months.

The following is a selection of the county's major employers and their policies. Name of Corporation: Amtrak Type of Corporation: Nationwide passenger railroad Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis and after every accident Name of Corporation: Bank of America Type of Corporation: Bank Savings and loan Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: Beckman Instruments Inc. Type of Corporation: Manufactures clinical lab instruments and chemical products Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis Name of Corporation: Denny's Inc. Type of Corporation: Restaurants Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: CIGNA Healthplans of Calif. Type of Corporation: Pre-paid healthcare Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: Disneyland Type of Corporation: Family entertainment Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: El Torito Restaurants Inc. Type of Corporation: Restaurants Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: Hughes Aircraft Co. Type of Corporation: Aerospace/defense contractor Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis Name of Corporation: Knott's Berry Farm Type of Corporation: Amusement park and restaurant Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: Los Alamitos Race Course Type of Corporation: Horse race track Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Horses after a win and jockeys with reason Name of Corporation: Los Angeles Times Type of Corporation: Daily newspaper Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis and after-accident option Name of Corporation: Northrop Corp. Type of Corporation: Aerospace manufacturer Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis Name of Corporation: Nordstrom Inc. Type of Corporation: Speciality department stores Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: OCTD Type of Corporation: Passenger bus service Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis and if accident occurs Name of Corporation: Orange County Register Type of Corporation: Daily newspaper Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis Name of Corporation: Rockwell International Type of Corporation: Aerospace/defense contractor Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis Name of Corporation: Sav-On Drugs Type of Corporation: Retail drugstore chain Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: St. Joseph Hospital Type of Corporation: Acute care hospital Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Fitness for duty testing Name of Corporation: Southern California Edison Type of Corporation: Utility Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis and random testing at nuclear plant Name of Corporation: Taco Bell Type of Corporation: Fast-food Mexican restaurant Type of Drug-Testing Policy: None Name of Corporation: TRW Information Services Type of Corporation: Credit reporting Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis Name of Corporation: Vons Grocery Co. Type of Corporation: Full service supermarket Type of Drug-Testing Policy: Pre-hire urinalysis for safety positions Source: individual corporations; UC Davis SAMPLE CHECK: DRUG TESTING LABORATORIES

Most laboratories that perform drug tests for individual doctors or for corporations say there has been a tremendous surge in their business within the last two years.

A qualitative drug test reveals only if a specific drug substance exists in the specimen, not the degree or percent to which it is present. The general public is not able to walk in off the street and request a drug test--a doctor's written permission is necessary.

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