Same-Day Drug Testing: Pros and Cons - What You Need to Know

Same-Day Drug Testing: Pros and Cons - What You Need to Know


Same day Drug Testing is a relatively new and promising method for drug testing in the workplace. It is also sometimes called "quick on-site", "rapid on-site", "point of care", or "direct on-site" testing. Let us learn all about this testing method and why it is so popular.

Table of Contents:

What Is a Same Day Drug Test?

A same-day drug test is a type of drug test that is performed on the same day that the specimen is collected. It means that you can get your result within a few hours of collection. It involves testing your specimen with an onsite device rather than sending it away to be tested. 

You may also see this drug test as "quick onsite" or "rapid onsite." The concept behind this method is to provide employers with the ability to test for drugs onsite, allowing them to test immediately without waiting on lab results.

The theory is that testing an employee right away will discourage substance abuse among employees rather than having them come into the office or hold onto them for several days. As far as testing for drugs goes, this is undoubtedly an innovative idea. 

It's hard to argue with the merits of getting results back faster, especially when preventing accidents due to substance abuse at work. Same-day drug tests are meant to be quick. Depending on the situation you are testing for, you may or may not have to collect a urine sample. 

In general, the more sensitive the test, the less time you need to give a specimen after it is collected. For example, if you are testing for marijuana metabolites in urine, an onsite device will probably be able to provide you with a result within three hours. 

It may not be as good as if you were sent away to be tested and gotten results back within 24 hours, but it's still better than waiting around for several days for results—the more of a rush you want to put on the employee, the more sensitive your test. Generally speaking, more sensitive tests give quicker results than less sensitive tests.

What drugs do a same-day drug screen test for?

A same-day drug test will test for any drug that has a recognizable chemical footprint. It includes all illicit drugs, prescription drugs, and even alcohol. The device may be able to tell the difference between opiates and other CNS depressants, but it's probably safe to assume that your employer doesn't care about this distinction.

If your test is intended to detect marijuana, the test should be able to distinguish between THC and THC-COOH, as well as other metabolites. If your test is designed as an "FDA cleared" drug screen, it should be able to detect any of the drugs that appear on SAMHSA's list of drugs of abuse.

It means that a same-day drug test will be able to tell you if an employee has used cocaine, prescription painkillers, opiates, methamphetamines, ecstasy, LSD, PCP, and other hallucinogens. It should also tell you whether an employee has used marijuana in the last few days. It is not intended to test specifically for THC levels in the system.

Pros Of Same Day Drug Testing

If a same-day drug test is performed correctly, employers will test employees within a few hours of collecting the specimen. Although some pros of same day drug testing are as follows

Determine if a person has used drugs

Testing for drugs helps employers to find out whether or not an employee is using drugs. It shows whether or not they are under the influence at work and indicates how long they may have been using these drugs. 

It helps an employer to get a better idea of what kind of problem they may be facing with an employee and take appropriate measures to deal with it

To monitor employee's progress

If a same-day drug test is being used to check someone's progress, it will help a lot to have a fast result. If a person is trying to stay clean for a certain amount of time, it will be tough to keep coming into the office or lab from home each day for drug testing. 

By having an onsite drug test, their progress can be monitored easily and quickly.

Promotes safe and healthy work environments

When an employee comes to work under the influence, it can be very unsafe for people around them. It can lead to injuries and accidents and affect their health and well-being and those of others. Having a same-day drug test allows an employer to get immediate results and help the employee if they are using drugs.

It can be performed anywhere and anytime

Same-day drug testing is performed on the same day as the specimen was collected. It does not need to be sent away to be tested, making it ideal for those who want an immediate result. 

Same-day drug tests can be used virtually anywhere as long as there is a device that has been approved. It allows employers to test their employees without worrying how far they are from a lab or office.

These tests can be performed right away; there is no need for employees to spend time getting tested at the lab or office. They can do it right at their desks and at their homes. It saves them not only time but money as well.

An employee can return to work right away

If the employee tests positive, the employer can send them home and contact a treatment facility or drug rehabilitation center to assist them. If they test negative, then they can be allowed back to work without wasting time and money.

Thus, same-day drug testing has many benefits to an employer and the employee and should always be used when possible. 

Cons Of Same Day Drug Testing

There are several cons to same-day drug testing; in-depth information on the same is provided below. 

Risk of false positives

Same-day drug testing can have a high risk of false positives due to the quick turnaround for results. Plus, the test will only detect drug or toxin usage during that given period or visit, so there is no way to determine how long they have been using drugs/toxins. 

Additionally, urine testing for drugs and toxins can also be unreliable if the person is on medication. 

Higher costs

Same-day drug testing can be expensive and difficult to manage for smaller employers. With a daily or weekly test, you can control costs without too much difficulty. However, since the sample only needs to be tested once to determine what drugs are being used or what toxins are being used, more policies have to be followed for the employee to comply upon receiving positive results. 

Furthermore, Same Day drug tests are expensive due to the high costs of the chemicals used in the test and the higher doses needed for accurate results. 

Cannot determine how long someone has been using drugs

As mentioned previously, urine tests can only detect drug usage during that particular period, so it is impossible to determine if an employee has recently stopped using drugs/toxins or if they have been using them for a more extended period. 

Restroom facilities are often not available

For employees to take the same-day drug test, the restroom facility should be available to urinate. It can be a problem for employees who do not have working restrooms at their local worksite. However, it does allow for a quick turnaround for the employees to take the test.

No time to make the employee aware of the test

Another problem with a daily or weekly same-day drug test is that it does not allow employees to be made aware of the test. Often the employee does not get any time to detox from the drug/toxin. 

Thus, same-day drug tests should only be used when a person is considered a safety risk to themselves or others due to the risk of false positives, higher costs, and not discriminating between alcohol and other drugs.

Best Sites For Same Day Drug Testing

If you are looking for a good website for same day drug testing, in-depth information on the same is provided below:

US Health testing 

US Health testing is one of the nation's leading providers of same-day drug testing in the United States. The site offers a variety of options to choose from, including urine, hair, and saliva. 

You can choose the drug testing type that best suits your needs. Moreover, the site has an online form that provides the options of same-day drug testing for employers. They aim to provide you with what you are searching for at a reasonable price. Their results are reliable too.

National drug screening. Inc

National drug screening is a website that provides same-day drug testing in the United States. The site offers low prices for same-day same-day drug testing. 

Moreover, the site offers an excellent service that you can avail for your business, company, organization, or team. With one phone call, it provides same-day drug testing in all US cities and nearest airports. 

e7 Health

e7 Health is a well-known company that offers same-day drug testing in the United States. The services provided by the site are fast, efficient, and accurate. It gives the option of drug testing as per your need and convenience. 

These same-day tests are confidential. The test results are provided within 1 hour of the time you take the test. 

Pom Drug testing service 

Pom Drug testing service is a US-based company that offers same-day drug testing. It has a good reputation for accurate results. 

It provides same-day drug testing, which is very reliable and accurate too. The tests are carried out to ensure that the user's privacy is maintained at all times. They even offer mobile collection services. On the other side, Pom Drug testing service has a great team of experts who are always ready to provide good customer service.


The same-day drug testing is a relatively new idea for employers and is by no means a perfect solution to the drug problems of their employees. However, same-day drug testing still has some advantages that can be counted on when appropriately used. 

Though same-day drug testing should only be used when a person is considered a safety risk to themselves or others due to the risk of false positives, higher costs, and not discriminating between alcohol and other drugs.

Therefore, it is advised that if employers are looking to use same-day drug testing for their business or company, they must understand the advantages and disadvantages of this type of testing.


What is the legality of using same-day drug testing?

Legal requirements and requirements for employers all over the United States differ; some places may require that an employee provide a urine sample for testing if they have been working within an area that has seen a significant spike in crime, such as a neighborhood where more than ten homicides have occurred in the previous year.

What do the results from a same-day drug test look like?

Results from a same-day drug test can appear as a positive or a negative. A positive result indicates that a user has used a prohibited drug in the past few days. In contrast, a negative result means that they have not used any drugs or have not used them recently enough to be detected by the particular drug test being used.

Why would a person choose to take a same-day drug test instead of waiting for the results from the more common tests used?

People trying to sober up before a job interview or test might choose to take a same-day drug test to clear illicit substances within the time frame they have available for the test.

How much does a same-day drug test cost?

The cost of a same-day drug test varies from place to place. Some employers have policies that allow them to access the price from the same-day drug testing company directly, while others must pay out-of-pocket for this service.

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