Amphetamines use in the workplace continues to grow
Amphetamines use, which grew rapidly between 2000 and 2003, continued to grow in 2004, although at a slower rate. Among general U.S. workforce employees, the incidence of positive drug tests attributed to amphetamines rose by approximately 6 percent in 2004 from 2003, reaching 0.52 percent of all drug tests that look for amphetamines among this group of workers. During 2003, amphetamines positivity was 0.49 percent. Between 2000 and 2003, year-over-year growth rates for amphetamines positivity had been 16 percent, 17 percent and 44 percent, respectively.
Among federally mandated, safety-sensitive workers, the incidence of positive drug tests attributed to amphetamines also grew by 6 percent, reaching 0.31percent of all drug tests that look for the use of amphetamines among these workers. During 2003, amphetamines positivity was 0.29 percent.
"The use of amphetamines among workers continued to grow in 2004," said Barry Sample, Ph.D., Director of Science and Technology for the Employer Solutions division of Quest Diagnostics. "However amphetamines use among workers grew at a slower pace, when compared to previous years."
Overall, the drug positivity rate for U.S. workers remained unchanged at 4.5% from 2003. The positivity rate is the number of positive test results compared to the total number of drug tests performed by Quest Diagnostics, which performed more than 7.2 million workplace drug tests from January to December 2004.
The Drug Testing Index summarizes the results of workplace drug tests performed by Quest Diagnostics between January and December 2004. The index examines positivity rates among three major testing populations: Federally-mandated, safety-sensitive workers; the general workforce; and the combined U.S. workforce.
During 2004, the drug positivity rate for Federally-mandated, safety-sensitive workers decreased to 2.3% from 2.5% in 2003, while the drug positivity rate for the general U.S. workforce declined to 4.9% from 5.0% in 2003.