What is an Observed Collection?

An observed collection is a specific drug test procedure where a trained observer directly watches the donor's urine sample. This is crucial to prevent tampering or substitution of the urine specimen. The observer ensures the sample's integrity by following strict guidelines:

  • Instructing the donor to raise their clothing above the waist and lower their pants and underpants to mid-thigh to check for any tampering devices.
  • Watching the urine go from the donor's body into the collection container without losing sight of the container.
  • Ensuring the donor does not turn away or conceal the collection process.
  • Observed collections are typically required when there is a suspicion of specimen tampering, following a prior invalid test result, or as part of a return-to-duty or follow-up testing program. The observer must be the same gender as the donor, and all procedures must respect the donor's privacy while maintaining the collection's integrity.

Proper training in drug and alcohol testing helps collectors understand when and how to conduct observed collections correctly, maintaining the integrity of the testing process and complying with regulatory requirements. This knowledge helps avoid errors and ensures that all procedures are followed precisely, protecting both the donor's rights and the accuracy of the test results.

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