Drug Testing
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What Is The 5-Panel Drug Test?

Are you an employer who is considering routine drug testing for your employees? You may find it worth your while to learn about the 5-panel drug test. This is one of the most common workplace drug-testing options: It’s a quick, non-invasive test for employees and potential employees, and you can get it at a great price. Below you will learn:

    • How 5-panel, 7-panel, and 10-panel tests work
    • Why you should choose a specific test over another for your unique situation

How Does a 5-Panel Drug Test Work?

5-panel drug tests, as mentioned above, are commonly used in the workplace because they are quick, efficient and only test five of the most common drugs your employees could be using. This option generally uses a urine drug test to scan the employee for the use of marijuana, PCP, amphetamines, cocaine, and opiates. This test will cover most employer’s needs, and it’s appropriate to be used in most workplaces. It also offers a quick turnaround that benefits all parties involved.

When your employees arrive to take the test, they will be directed by a staff member to empty their pockets and place their belongings in a secure area. They will provide their urine sample in a discreet area and hand over their cup to the staff member. After employees sign the necessary paperwork and consent forms, they will be able to leave.

How Long Do 5-Panel Drug Test Results Take?

If your employee’s tests are clean — meaning that all results were negative — you may get results back within three business days. If the test showed a positive result, you have to wait a little bit longer as the lab will run a second test on that patient’s urine to make sure it is a true positive. If this needs to happen, you may see results within five business days.

What Is the 7-Panel Drug Test?

The 7-panel test is similar to the 5-panel test with the addition of two classes of prescription drugs: Benzodiazepines, like Valium, and barbiturates (drugs that slow down the central nervous system), like Nembutal. It’s up to you as the employer whether you would rather screen your employees for prescription drug abuse as well as illegal drug use.

What Is the 10-Panel Drug Test?

For employers looking for a more extensive option, the 10-panel test may be your best bet. It is designed to screen employees for a wide range of both legal (prescription) and illegal drugs. Keep in mind, though, that your employees may be taking prescription drugs for medical reasons, so it’s best to reserve this type of test for when you truly need it.

What Is the Difference Between a 5-Panel and a 10-Panel Drug Test?

You’ll notice at first glance that the 10-panel tests for twice as many drugs as the 5-panel. Why is this, and why would you choose to screen for fewer drugs? Well, perhaps you don’t have a concern about your employees using benzodiazepines or propoxyphene (a cough suppressant). These tests may reveal that your employees are using prescription medications that, in most cases, are being used to treat medical conditions.

Choosing the right test can be difficult when you are given so many options, and you may not know which one will give you the most accurate picture of your employees’ status. If you have questions regarding the 5-panel test (or others), be sure to reach out to us as soon as possible at ARCpoint Labs of Sugar Land.