N.J. workers flunked drug tests for these reasons

BY KATHLEEN O’BRIEN kobrien@njadvancemedia.com,
NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
Mirroring a national trend, a greater percentage of New Jersey employees flunked their work-related drug tests last year than in at any point since 2002.

But some of the drugs that show up in tests in N.J. are different than in other parts of the country.

Marijuana is the most common drug found in workplace-related drug tests, both nationwide and in New Jersey, according to Quest Diagnostics, the Madison-based lab services giant.

The company recently crunched the numbers on over 10 million drug tests nationwide performed by employers, and found a general rise in drug presence in test results in 2016, accompanied by distinct regional differences.

After marijuana, the most frequent cause of flunking a drug test nationally was amphetamines.

However, New Jersey tests were lower than the national average for amphetamines, cocaine, and opiates, but higher for heroin, oxycodones, and PCP, a hallucinogen, according to data provided by Barry Sample, Quest Diagnostics senior director for its employment testing division.

Quest Diagnostics says it is one of the largest providers of workforce drug testing, and has analyzed workplace drug testing data annually since 1988. It presented its findings for 2016 at presented at the Drug and Alcohol Testing Industry Association annual conference last week.


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