Drug Testing Centers and Facilities in Lakeland, Florida

Drug testing is commonplace, but it is poorly understood. Despite the fact that anyone, even those who have never touched a narcotic, can be asked to submit to a drug test due to liability concerns, as part of job applications, or as part of a standard battery of medical tests, many people remain unaware of how they work, how they are administered, and what they mean.

Drug testing in Lakeland is a common method of creating accountability and enforcing responsibility. Whether part of a substance abuse treatment program in Lakeland or a test administered as part of an employment check, you should know what they are, how they work, and how to find the right drug testing facility for your needs.

Lakeland Drug Testing Centers

Drug tests can be done in any medical facility, a standalone facility that specializes in drug tests, or in a laboratory contained inside a larger facility. In absolute terms, drug testing is not particularly medically complicated; it is a myth that a drug test must be run by a doctor, and, in truth, experienced lab technicians often handle the process.

When you take a drug test, you will be required to give what in medical jargon is called a “specimen,” which is just a sample of something from your body. There are five common specimens that are used in drug testing. Urine and blood are common, but hair, sweat, and saliva can also be tested. It will depend on both the drug being looked for and the range of time that the test is looking to uncover. A test of hair can offer a view of the drug history of patient stretching back months, while saliva or perspiration can track more recent activity.

How far back each test goes, and what drugs it finds, will depend on the substances being screened. Drug tests are not universal. Instead, samples are taken of a specimen and tested for specific signs of a drug in the patient’s system. The tests are looking for the chemicals that the body breaks down the active ingredients of various drugs into, which are called “metabolites.” Each drug has different metabolites, and as a result, must be tested for independently. Each test is called a “panel,” and drug tests are referred to by the number of panels. The most common test is a five-panel test for marijuana, cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, and PCP.

Patients should be prepared to disclose their medical history, or make arrangements for a testing facility to speak with their doctor, to the extent that prescribed medications may have some impact on the test. Drug tests are usually considered medical records, and the patient must consent for someone else to hear the results. That person should be familiar with medical records law and their obligation to protect that knowledge.

Finding Drug Testing Facilities Near Me

When seeking referrals for a drug testing facility, accuracy, privacy, speed, and experience should all play an important role in which one you pick. Experience is important. Experienced and accurate technicians will be able to tell the difference between a potential drug concern and amounts too low to consider. Speed is often important due to medical or legal needs; employers do not want to wait a week to start a new employee and employees do not enjoy a forced week at home. Finally, privacy is fundamentally important as even “clean” tests can still be subject to medical records laws.

There are several ways to go about finding the right drug testing facility in Lakeland. A hospital or doctor’s office often has the tools to perform the tests directly, or if they subcontract the work, can point you toward a laboratory they have verified for the task. Insurance companies, especially ones that require customers to perform a drug test as part of their acceptance process, also will have private referrals for facilities they use. If you or the person going for the test has a counselor or another mental health professional, that person may also have references. Finally, online listings will allow you to contact commercial facilities directly and request an appointment. SAMHSA maintains a comprehensive list of certified testing facilities nationwide.

A drug test is a simple procedure that allows you to take better control of your medical history and present proof of your responsibility and accountability. Whether for medical, social, or employment reasons, finding a good drug testing facility will ensure that control and responsibility are always visible. Reach out to The Recovery Village for help in finding drug testing facilities and other addiction treatment resources in Lakeland.