Drug Testing Kits A Quick Guide

We have put together this quick guide to the type of drug and alcohol testing kits available from UK Drug Testing, and how they are used

We stock the UK's largest range of rapid onsite drug and alcohol testing kits for urine and saliva that give results in minutes.

Drug testing kits for urine and saliva

Drug test kits are ideal for workplace drug and alcohol screening. As we buy in bulk direct from the manufacturers we are able to offer our customers very competitive prices on high accuracy drug test kits. Our drug test ranges are selected to offer the very latest in accuracy and ease of use.

We offer the largest selection of saliva drug testing kits in the UK, with combinations to suit business, healthcare and workplace drug testing. Being an independent supplier, we are also able to offer a large range of manufacturer-branded products, from carefully selected biotech manufacturers, offering the very best quality and value, and a modern and relevant range of tests, including drug testing kits for recently developed new psychoactive substances or designer drugs ( NPS previously known as legal highs)

What are drug testing kits?

Drug testing kits are saliva or urine tests which detect minute amounts of drug and drug metabolites in the fluid as an indication of consumption. Drug tests screen for main illicit, but also some prescription and over the counter drugs which are relevant in reducing cognitive ability.

How do the drug test kits work?

Drug test kits are a type of lateral flow test kit. They work by screening urine or saliva for drugs or the metabolites of drugs.  

How to perform a drug test?

Screening for drugs is no more complicated than running a home pregnancy test.

The sample is applied to the test kit, depending on the format and design of the drug test kit that you are using, the drug test result is revealed in 5 to 10 minutes with an accuracy of over 99% in most drug tests compared with an equivalent laboratory drug test.

How to read the results on a drug test 

Drug test results are read differently to most other types of lateral flow tests in that two lines is not a positive result, it is negative.

  • Negative results (two lines visible on a drug test) indicate no drug is detectable at or above the cut off level stated.
  • Positive results (just one C line visible) indicate a drug has been detected. Positive test results should be confirmed using a laboratory GC/MS test if the test has been done in a workplace employment setting. More on this later.

How many drugs to screen for?

Drug tests are normally banded together in multi-drug combinations, panel or cup tests, of up to 13 different drug screens. Each screen is specific for an individual drug group, so on 1 sample, you can be screening for multiple different drugs. You get a positive or a negative result for each drug type. 

Drug testing kits are also available for single drugs where you may just want to screen for one drug such as Cannabis.

The single drug tests are usually urine tests and are available as either a strip or a cassette.

What kind of drugs show up on a drug test kit?

The number of drugs that can be detected using drug testing kits is increasing every day as the biotechnology improves. When rapid onsite drug testing kits first appeared on the UK market they were only able to test for a limited number of drugs including Cannabis, Cocaine, and Opiates, and the most commonly used drug test kit was a 5-panel urine drug test. Now the choice is much greater and most drugs can now be detected with onsite drug screening. As new drugs emerge on to the drug scene, manufacturers respond by developing a drug test membrane to detect the new drug.

The following drugs can currently be detected using either urine or saliva near patient drug testing kits:

  • Cannabis
  • Cocaine
  • Opiates
  • Amphetamine
  • Methamphetamine
  • MDMA (Ecstacy)
  • Ketamine
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Tramadol
  • Methadone
  • K2 (spice )
  • Mephedrone (MCAT)
  • Barbiturates
  • EDDP
  • Oxycodone
  • Buprenorphine
  • Tricyclic antidepressants (TCA )
  • PCP (Angel dust),
  • 6 - MAM Heroin specific
  • Zolpidem
  • LSD
  • Propoxyphene
  • Gabapentin
  • GHB

It is important to note that not all drug testing kits will detect all these drugs. The most common drugs of abuse are tested for most often and these include Cannabis, Cocaine, Opiates, Ecstacy, methamphetamine & benzodiazepines. 

The 17-panel drug integrated cup drug testing kits are currently our most comprehensive urine drug test kit.

Why use drug testing kits at work?

Screening for drugs using drug testing kits can help to reduce the risk of an individual coming to work under the influence of drugs and can identify employees, patients or family members who are using drugs.

Employers have a legal duty under the health and safety act to ensure a safe workplace, and dealing with any drug and alcohol issues is crucial as part of a company's health and safety policy.

Drugs in the workplace can have very serious consequences if the individual is under the influence of drugs while operating machinery, working at height, driving a vehicle or doing any occupation where being cognitively impaired by drugs or alcohol, could affect the well-being and safety of the individual or those they work with or come into contact with while at work.

See best selling workplace drug testing kits

Workplace Drug Testing

If you are just starting workplace drug testing, we have put together a list of our most popular drug testing kits for employee drug testing in our workplace section of the website. You can choose from either urine or saliva.

If you do not see the combination of drugs that you are looking for, get in touch as we have a large range of drug test kits testing for different combinations of drugs.

When to use a workplace drug testing laboratory confirmation test kit

Our drug testing kits are ideal for first-line screening for drugs of abuse. If the screening test is negative, then you will not need to do anything else.

If the onsite drug test is positive and it is in a workplace setting, then you will need to proceed to a laboratory confirmation drug test.

You can choose to either do a urine or saliva lab drug test. The detection period for urine is longer for most drugs and so for most companies is the better choice.

Our lab drug tests are carried out by a fully accredited UK laboratory

If you are doing workplace drug testing it is always worth having at least one of these confirmation drug test packs in case you need to confirm a non-negative result.

UK Drug Testing quick guide to drug test kits last reviewed and updated 18/11/23