Workplace Drug Test Positives Continue to Drop, SmithKline Beecham Reports
Workplace drug tests positives have hit a 10-year low, with over half of the positives attributable to marijuana. Only 5.8% of more than 4 million general workforce drug tests performed by SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories (SBCL) in 1996 were positive, a 13% decline from 1995 (SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories, "Workplace Drug Test Positives Drop to a 10-Year Low, SmithKline Beecham Data Show," press release, January 30, 1997).
"The positive test result percentage for 1996 is the lowest we've seen since we began tracking the results of our workplace drug test results in 1987," said John B. Okkerse, Jr., Ph.D., President of SBCL. Since then, the overall rate of positives has declined by 68%. Okkerse said that "marijuana continues to be the most frequently detected substance." Marijuana accounted for 54.4% of the positives and cocaine accounted for 22.5%.
Although testing in the general workforce has shown fewer positives each year, federally mandated substance abuse testing for members of the safety sensitive transportation workforce has shown an increase in positives since 1993.
Over the last ten years, SBCL has performed drug tests on nearly 24 million samples from American workers. The SmithKline Beecham Drug Testing Index is released every six months as a service for government, media and industry. For information regarding last year's report, see "Workplace Drug-Test Positives Falling," NewsBriefs, April 1996.
|Safety Sensitive Transportation Workforce||2.8%||3.5%||3.4%||3.6%|
|Combined U.S. Workforce||8.4%||7.5%||6.7%||5.8%|
Drug Positive Rate
|(As a % of All Tests)||(As a % of All Tests)|
|Benzodiazephine, Valium & Librium||1.1%||0.8%||0.5%||0.38%||Benzodiazephine, Valium & Librium||5.8%|
The SmithKline Beecham press release and color graphics are available on-line at: http://www.sb.com/news/dti.html. For further information, contact Thomas Johnson at SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories, Tel: (610) 454-6202 or (800) 877-7478.