Johnna and Mandy are best friends who recently learned about several job openings at a local manufacturing facility. Together, the two apply for open positions matching their individual skill sets. To their delight, both are called in for interviews and later selected for employment. But first, Johnna and Mandy must pass a pre-employment drug test.
Both Mandy and Johnna will fail their drug tests for the same drug–a prescription pain medicine. However, Johnna is still offered a position while Mandy is declined for employment. Here’s why:
Two weeks before applying for the new job, Johnna underwent major dental surgery and was given a prescription for opiate pain medicine. Johnna was often able to manage the pain with over-the-counter pain relievers and had several prescription painkillers left over.
The day before Mandy and Johnna returned to take their pre-employment drug test, Mandy had a migraine headache that wouldn’t go away with her regular medication. Johnna offered Mandy a prescription pain reliever and Mandy accepted. Neither considered the dangers of sharing prescription pain relievers or that Mandy would now fail her drug test.
Luckily, Mandy didn’t have any bad side effects from taking Johnna’s medicine. However, she didn’t get the job she wanted and both Mandy and Johnna learned a tough lesson that day.
What To Do If You Have a Prescription and Need to Take a Drug Test
You should inform HR personnel about your prescription before you take a drug test so they can tell you the best course of action. This will likely include bringing a note from your provider and your prescription to the drug screening. You should be prepared to bring this documentation if you have a prescription for any type of narcotic including opiate pain meds and benzodiazepine medication for anxiety.
In the case of Johnna and Mandy, Johnna was still offered a job because she brought the proper documentation that proved she had a prescription for opiate pain killers. A few months later, the manufacturing facility began hiring again. Mandy was given a second chance to apply for the same position she wanted months before and this time she passed her drug screening with flying colors.
Drug screens are in place to protect both the employee and the employer. Pre-screening drug tests help HR personnel filter out unsafe hires while random drug tests alert employers to a possible addiction problem with an employee.
Failing a drug test doesn’t mean you’ve lost a chance at a new job or will be fired from your current job. Many employers will help addicted employees get into a rehabilitation program with a promise to come back to their job after the employee has completed the program and remained sober.
Are you an HR employee in the Guntown/Baldwyn area seeking a better, more efficient way to drug screen new hires and current employees? EliteCare offers workplace drug testing programs for businesses in the Northern Lee County area. We are conveniently located next to Dollar General in Guntown, near the Northern Lee County Manufacturing park on the Guntown/Baldwyn border. For more information, dial 662-348-3342.