DOT Drug Tests vs. MedicalMarijuana: The ShowdownByMobile Health229 West 36th Street – New York, NY 10018
Marijuana Background• Since 1970 the United States congressclassified marijuana a Schedule 1 drug andillegal for any reason, medicinal orrecreational.• But starting in 1996, individual states startedto allow marijuana use for prescribed medicalpurposes.
Legalization Trend• Most recently in 2013, Colorado andWashington legalized all uses for marijuanaincluding recreational.• Despite such state efforts, marijuana is stillillegal at the federal level and therefore illegaland tested for during a DOT drug test.
DOT Drug Test• The Department of Transportation (DOT) requires alltruck drivers to undergo an initial and annual medicalexam and DOT drug test.• The drug test is a 5 panel test that checks for– Marijuana– Cocaine– Amphetamine– Opiates– Phencyclidine.• And as required by DOT standards, the test must bedone with a urine sample, and certified by a SAMHSAlaboratory.
Legalized State Exemption?• Some have wondered if residents of statesthat legalized marijuana are exempted frombeing tested for marijuana during their drugtest.• The simple answer is no.
Federal Laws Prevail• The DOT is a federal agency, and according tofederal law, marijuana is still an illegalsubstance.• Even if the driver drives within a legalizedstate’s border only, the driver must stillanswer to federal law which prohibitsmarijuana use.
False Positives• There are very few and rare times where aperson may fail a DOT drug test due to using acontrolled substance.• Usually this applies when the individual istaking an approved prescription medicationthat results in a false positive.• There is no prescribed medication today thatwould cause a false positive for THC(marijuana).
Maybe Legal Later?• Regardless of legal status or not, marijuanaimpairs the individual’s driving ability and forthis simple reason, it will most likely remain aprohibited substance during a DOT drug test.
Mobile Health• Mobile Health is a NYC pre-employmentscreening company focusing on:– Employee physicals– Drug Testing– Background Checks• To learn more about our services, call 646-625-3016 or visit us online atwww.mobilehealth.net