What Does Drug Testing Measure?

More recently some workplaces have adopted oral fluid/saliva testing.

Some people support saliva testing over urine testing because it is arguably less intrusive and because it measures the presence of the active drug – not a metabolite. That is, they have active drug present in their system.

However, it is still not possible to determine how much a person has used nor how intoxicated or impaired they are. This is one key reason why drug testing is controversial.

Of course, it is also important to remember that a person may also have a negative breath or drug test, yet still be impaired from ‘hangover’ or ‘comedown’ effects – a negative test is not a guarantee of safety.

As with any analysis, errors can occur with both urine and saliva drug testing and that is why Australian Standards have been developed.

  • Australian Saliva Drug Testing Standard AS4760:2006
  • Australian Urine Drug Testing Standard 4308:2008