Failing a drug screen while employed in positions with the Department of Transportation (DOT) can be a sobering experience that can affect one’s career path. It is important to be aware of the steps that must be taken if one has failed a DOT drug test, and to use available resources to treat the issue.
First, an individual must undergo a DOT SAP Evaluation, which is conducted by the DOT to determine the extent of a person’s drug or alcohol use. This assessment assesses the individual’s use of substances and the possible risks they pose to themselves and to the safety of their community. The assessment will also provide recommended treatment interventions.
The DOT SAP Evaluation is the beginning of a multi-step process that includes an initial interview, documentation review, substance use assessment, individualized treatment planning, and completion of an education program. The initial interview will involve discussing the individual’s drug or alcohol use and identifying any mental health conditions that may be contributing to the problem. A documentation review is conducted to determine if the individual has a history of substance abuse or addiction and treatment interventions. A substance use assessment is done to determine the abuse patterns and plan for substance use treatment. Individualized treatment planning is conducted to identify treatment goals and objectives and provide options for treatment. Finally, the completion of an education program is necessary to help educate the individual on the risks associated with drug and alcohol use.
Once the DOT SAP evaluation is completed, the SAP will offer a treatment recommendation. Treatment modalities for substance abuse vary widely and can include inpatient and/or outpatient treatment, individual or group counseling, cognitive-behavioral therapy, 12-step programs, and professional medical evaluation. The goal of treatment is to reduce the harm associated with alcohol and drug use and to learn better ways to manage one’s substance use.
At the end of the treatment process, a completed treatment program evaluation must be submitted to the DOT or a third-party agency. The DOT SAP evaluation includes a review of the treatment process, a summary of the participant’s progress toward achieving recovery, and recommendations for further treatment or follow-up if needed. This evaluation may also be used to determine when a driver meets the requirements for medical fitness certification with the Department of Transportation.
Failing a drug screen while employed in positions with the DOT does not always mean the end of a career. Through the SAP evaluation process, individuals may have the opportunity to learn effective ways to manage their substance use and put themselves on the path to recovery. It is important for individuals to take full advantage of the resources available and to seek treatment to improve their chances of continuing their careers in the DOT.
Considering a DOT SAP Evaluation at this time? Then www.sapevaluation.org is an invaluable resource for your needs. 1-800-683-7745 will get you in touch with someone to set up your DOT SAP Evaluation as soon as possible!