May 31, 2018 [Ayr, ON] – Please be advised that DriverCheck will be implementing an expanded opioid testing panel for lab-based drug tests for all of our clients effective as of June 4, 2018.
All clients will be moved to the new expanded opioid panel for any lab-based testing effective June 4, 2018;
- Result letters will now say “opioids” instead of “opiates”;
- There is a terminology change to the panel names on result letters;
- Point of Care Testing (POCT) technology does not yet allow for testing of the expanded opioid panel at the appropriate cut-off levels, except for oxycodone;
- We strongly encourage you to review your existing alcohol and drug policy to see how it may be impacted by these changes.
Earlier this year, we advised all DriverCheck clients that the Department of Transportation (DOT) expanded the drug testing panel to include four new opioids (oxycodone, oxymorphone, hydrocodone, hydromorphone) in an effort to improve safety and to assist those impacted by the opioid crisis. The regulation change has also resulted in more comprehensive Medical Review Officer (MRO) requirements.
We have already made the necessary changes for DOT regulated programs to be in compliance with the new regulations, which were effective as of January 1, 2018. We are now mirroring this regulatory change with programs that are not regulated by the DOT.
The reasoning behind this is threefold:
1. The DOT is the gold standard in North America for laboratory-based urine drug testing programs.
2. We anticipate the Canadian Model will be incorporating this change into their next version coming out shortly (for those companies that follow it).
3. The laboratory will be making the old 5 panel test obsolete in the future.
Lab-based Urine Testing
Below is a list of the revisions to be implemented in the existing lab-
based urine drug test panel. Please note that this extended panel will reference ‘opioids’ instead of what is currently referred to as ‘opiates’, effective as of June 4, 2018.
The opioid testing panel will now also include:
If your drug testing program includes more substances than noted in the above chart, there are no changes to those drug panels and cut-off levels will remain the same.
Lab-based urine panel names will now be reported as follows:
|Old Panel Name||New Panel Name|
|5 Panel + OXY||5 Panel|
|5 Panel+BAR+BEN+MET+PRO+OXY||5 Panel+BAR+BEN+MET+PRO|
POCT Urine Testing
We are currently working with the laboratory to determine when the new extended opioid testing panel will be available for urine point of care testing (POCT). We will send a communication in the future explaining options once details are confirmed.
If your company would like to stay as consistent as possible with the new DOT drug testing panel, at this time you are able to add only oxycodone to your POCT urine testing program.
If you would like to add oxycodone to your POCT urine testing panel, please contact our Client Support Group to have this set up.
Please note that if a POCT test is non-negative for opioids, the confirmation only includes the analyte(s) that tested non-negative on the POCT test.
The POCT urine testing kits will remain the same, but the panel names will now be reported as follows:
|Old Panel Name||New Panel Name|
|5 Panel||7 Panel Urine POCT|
|5 Panel + OXY||8 Panel Urine POCT|
|5 Panel + FEN||7 Panel + Fentanyl Urine POCT|
|5 Panel + OXY + FEN||8 Panel + Fentanyl Urine POCT|
Oral Fluid (Saliva) Lab-based Testing
To keep in harmony with lab-based urine testing and the extended opioid panel, effective as of June 4, 2018 oral fluid (saliva) lab-based testing will include oxycodone, hydrocodone, and hydromorphone.
Oxymorphone is not currently available for the oral fluid lab-based testing panel, but we will make an announcement once the laboratory can accommodate this request.
Please note that results from oral fluid (saliva) lab-based testing will be reported as ‘opioids’ instead of what is currently reported as ‘opiates’.
Hair Follicle Testing
Please note that results from hair follicle testing will be reported as ‘opioids’ instead of what is currently reported as ‘opiates’.
Hair follicle testing will continue to test for all opioids that are included in the new standard 5 panel lab-based urine drug test.
Alcohol and Drug Testing Policy
In preparation of these changes, we strongly encourage you to review your existing alcohol and drug policy to see how it may be impacted by these changes.
We recommend that your policy references only the drug classes vs. specific drugs or cut-off levels. We advise you to follow up with your legal counsel or policy provider to make any necessary updates.
If you have any questions about the changes noted above, please don’t hesitate to contact Client Support at (800) 463-4310, option 6, or by email at ClientSupport@DriverCheck.ca.