Soldiers to be Tested for Prescription Drug Abuse

The Army will soon begin expanded testing of Soldiers for unauthorized prescription drugs, in addition to currently tested illegal substances.

“We’re starting with hydrocodone and hydromorphone as the first expansion” of testing said Lt. Col. Shaun Bailey, chief of the drug testing branch at the Army Center for Substance Abuse Programs. He explained that these two pain-killers are widely used, as they are found in Vicodin and other brand-named drugs.

“We will continue to expand and increase our prescription drug-testing capabilities in the months to come,” Bailey said. “We’re not limiting ourselves in this initial announcement.” The expanded testing of urinalysis samples will begin around May 1 and ramp up as more labs come online, Bailey said. The program will be fully implemented Army-wide by Oct. 1 as part of the Army’s crackdown on prescription drug abuse.

Source: United States Army – February 27, 2012