Clinical drug testing fell by over 50% in spring of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study from Quest Diagnostics®. At the same time, the proportion of samples testing positive for dangerous illicit drugs and drug combinations rose.
In mandated tests of employees in safety-sensitive jobs, marijuana had the highest rate of drug positivity, followed by opioids and amphetamines, according to the 2020 Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index™ report. The report includes data from over 2.4 million tests from January to December 2019 of workers in safety-sensitive positions undergoing federally mandated drug tests. These include workers in the airline, transportation, and marine industries, among others.
The COVID-19 pandemic appears to have reduced the number of patients receiving treatment at medication-assisted treatment (MAT) facilities, according to data from a new study from Quest Diagnostics analyzing clinical drug test results before and during the pandemic.
While non-prescribed use of several drugs, including fentanyl, increased with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, non-prescribed use of gabapentin fell, according to a new study from Quest Diagnostics®. The study compared non-prescribed prescription and illicit drug positivity before and during the pandemic.