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Addressing drug-related workers’ compensation costs with drug testing, P.2

Previously, we began looking at the topic of drug and alcohol abuse in the workplace and the costs it can have for employers, particularly with respect to workers’ compensation expenses. One of the tools employers can use to address the problem of drug abuse in the workplace is drug testing.

There are different ways for employers to utilize drug testing, including pre-employment testing, post-accident testing, “reasonable suspicion” testing, and random testing. Each state has its own laws concerning the use of drug testing in employment, and employers are responsible for abiding by these laws. 

In Ohio, employment drug testing laws cover various rules applying to alcohol and drug testing techniques and methods, the collection and handling of specimens, test result reporting and record retention, testing policies, disciplinary action, and the appeal of drug test results. Another important aspect of Ohio state law is the Drug-Free Safety Program.

The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, through its Drug-Free Safety Program (DFSP), offers employers a premium rebate, which allows employers reduce their workers’ compensation costs. The aim of the program is to help employers meet long-term safety goals by motivating them with workers’ compensation cost savings.

Under the DFSP, there is both a basic and an advanced level of participation. Employers who participate in the basic level are eligible for a four percent premium rebate, while a seven percent rebate is available for employers who participate at the advanced level. The rebates are only available to employers who meet all the requirements of the program.

In a future post, we’ll look at some of the requirements of the DFSP concerning drug testing.

Sources:

Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation, Drug-Free Safety Program information, Accessed August 15, 2017.

Ohio Administrative Code, Section 123.1-76

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