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Advancing Your Career – Types of Drug Testing Certification Programs

By Andrew David Easler, Esq.

Are you interested in becoming a drug testing professional? There’s a significant need for trained, credentialed workers in this field, and that need is only going to increase over time. The US BLSr reports that this sector is expected to see significantly more growth than most others, up to 22% between now and 2025. You can take advantage of that by understanding the types of drug testing certification programs and determining which is right for you. There are three certification programs that you should consider.

Breath Test Technician

While breath tests aren’t administered to detect the presence of illicit drugs, they are used to determine whether an employee has been consuming alcohol on the job, directly before arriving at work, and between stopping work and leaving the business property. Alcohol screening drug testing certification programs take several hours to complete, but you will be registered as both a calibration technician for breathalyzer devices and a breath test technician for administering tests and recording data.

Urine Specimen Collector

Urine Specimen collector types of drug testing certification programs are designed to give you the skills and knowledge necessary to obtain urine samples from donors, handle them correctly, label them accurately, and keep records during the process. As the most commonly used drug screening process in the country, there is significant demand for professionals with these credentials.

Hair Specimen Collector

Hair tests, also known as follicular drug screening, can show a long history of drug use in an individual and are often used by companies seeking to determine drug use over a specific time period, rather than those concerned with very recent history, as many drugs are eliminated from body fluids in as little as 48 to 72 hours. Hair specimen collectors are trained to collect specimens, label them, and record data accurately.

Blood Testing

Blood tests are used to detect both alcohol and drugs. To perform this type of test, you must be a credentialed phlebotomist, which requires lengthier training than urine or hair collection, or breath test certification. Most phlebotomists work in medical centers, hospitals, and other similar settings.

Where to Find Employment

With these types of drug testing certification programs, you have several options for employment. You might find work with a hospital or medical clinic, or working within a drug testing facility. Some collectors/technicians choose to start their own company, liaising between employers and laboratories.

 

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