Pandemic could lead to higher rate of deaths of despair

According to the results of a new study, the total number of deaths from drug overdose, alcohol, and suicide combined was lower in 2018 compared to 2017, and are levelling out for the first time in 20 years. Specifically, the report highlights lower numbers of overdose deaths involving prescription opioids, including oxycodone, hydrocodone, and heroin, … Continued

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FMCSA grants waiver for pre-employment testing

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the FMCSA, an agency of the DOT, has put a three-month waiver into place for certain pre-employment testing requirements. This waiver comes in response to the President’s Executive Order No. 13924, issued on May 19, 2020, Regulatory Relief to Support Economic Recovery. This order from the president had to do … Continued

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Arbitrator rules drug test policy too broad

A recent arbitration decision has determined that parts of the Saskatchewan Health Authority’s (SHA) drug and alcohol testing policy are too broad. The policy was created in 2018, following legalization of cannabis. The arbitration ruling was made on March 31, following a grievance filed by the Health Sciences Association of Saskatchewan (HSAS) in October 2018. … Continued

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U.S. Anti-doping agency launches at-home drug testing program

The US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has announced the initiation of an unprecedented at-home drug testing program which will involve top Olympians conducting self-administered urine and blood tests while being observed remotely on Zoom or FaceTime by USADA personnel. The new virtual testing program is currently the only one of its kind in the world and … Continued

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New York City bans testing for cannabis

A new law passed by the New York City Council referred to as Int. No. 1445-A took effect on May 10, 2020. This new law prohibits employers in New York City from requiring prospective employees to submit to drug testing for tetrahydrocannabinols (THC), the active ingredient in cannabis. Earlier in 2019, legislators in both New … Continued

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Ontario temporarily lowers price of alcohol sold by restaurants

The province of Ontario has lowered the minimum price of alcohol sold by licensed bars and restaurants to alleviate the burden of the struggling hospitality industry amid the COVID-19 pandemic. “The AGCO continues to work closely with the Government of Ontario during the state of emergency to support Ontarians and the sectors we regulate.” Jean … Continued

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MROCC approves DATAC MROA course

DATAC is very excited to announce the release of our very own Medical Review Officer Team Member/Assistant (MROA) course, the ONLY Canadian course of its kind. This course has been approved by the only regulatory body that gives out the MRO Team Member certification, the Medical Review Officer Certification Council (MROCC).  You may remember our … Continued

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Canadian drug seizures and arrests aided by social distancing

Despite ongoing social distancing measures, multiple drug seizure operations have taken place across Canada. In April, Chilliwack RCMP had reported a seizure of illegal drugs, cash and firearms on a search warrant at a private residence in Chilliwack, BC, which took place in February. This operation resulted in the arrest of four people in the … Continued

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Coronavirus response takes toll on addiction rehabilitation

Health authorities and organizations have recently expressed their growing concerns regarding the effects of social distancing and restrictions on addiction recovery during the coronavirus outbreak across North America. As usual routines become disrupted for individuals battling addiction, the COVID-19 pandemic could pose significant obstacles to recovery and limit their access to essential services and programs. … Continued

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