Cannabix Addresses Challenges with Marijuana Testing in the Workplace
September 13th, 2021
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Marijuana legalization is on the rise across the United States. While decriminalization is a noble cause, there are many unintended consequences that the government and private sector struggle to manage. One of the most significant challenges is detecting when someone is under the influence of marijuana. Cannabix Technologies Inc. (CSE: BLO) (OTC: BLOZF) is an innovative company actively developing solutions to address this growing problem.
Problems in the Workplace
There’s no doubt that marijuana use causes cognitive impairment. The adverse effects on attention, memory, and learning can last for days or weeks after the acute effects of “getting high” wear off. While low productivity is a concern for businesses, workplace safety is far more significant with life-or-death implications.
Quest Diagnostics, one of the largest drug testing laboratories in the country, recently reported that 4.4 percent of all U.S. workers tested positive for marijuana in 2020. Even worse, 2.2 percent of workers in sensitive industries—like truck driving, pilots, or nuclear power plant workers—tested positive for marijuana.
Commonly used urine drug tests cannot determine if individuals are under the influence at the test time, post-accident data suggests that marijuana may play a role in incidents that prompted a drug test. Pre-employment positivity was just 3.7 percent compared to post-accident positivity of 6.4 percent, pointing strongly toward an impact.
Quest Diagnostics also found that marijuana use was on the rise in states where the drug has been legalized for recreational use. With a growing number of states falling under that umbrella, employers need to find ways to discourage on-the-job marijuana use to prevent accidents and create a better and more productive workplace.
The Need for Real-time Tests
Most marijuana tests do not discern the recency of marijuana consumption and have virtually no correlation to impairment.
The need for real-time tests is evident in industries like long-haul trucking. Everyone agrees that truck drivers should never drive under the influence of marijuana, but a new federal clearinghouse and new regulations allowing hair follicle testing have gone too far. These laws could prevent truckers from using recreational marijuana during their own time. Since the clearinghouse went into effect, the industry has already lost nearly 50,000 drivers.
Long detection window makes urine tests less useful. Source: Cannabix Technologies Inc.
Fortunately, new technologies could open the door to real-time tests. In particular, breath analysis has the potential to detect recent marijuana use. Aerosol particles in exhaled breath are formed from respiratory tract lining fluid that only contains THC for a relatively short period of time (one to three hours), aligning with the peak impairment window.
In addition to more accurate readings, breath analysis is non-invasive and non-intrusive, leading to fewer privacy issues. Furthermore, the inexpensive tests don’t require any nurses or technicians, and they can be completed at the point of care rather than sent to a third-party lab. It’s a far better solution than intrusive and expensive urine or blood tests.
Investing in a Solution
Cannabix Technologies Inc. (CSE: BLO) (OTC: BLOZF) is quickly developing cannabis breathalyzer technologies that would be appropriate for work place and other settings. In addition to securing patents on its unique approaches, the company’s advanced prototypes are already in beta testing in real world situations.
THC Breath Analyzer prototype. Source: Cannabix Technologies Inc.
With a growing need among employers and law enforcement, the company could see a lot of growth if it successfully launches a product into the market.
Marijuana use has become a growing problem in the workplace. Unfortunately, most conventional marijuana testing methods like oral fluid or urine testing do not correlate well with peak impairment and can show detection of THC after several hours or days after use. Recreational cannabis users who are not “high” could experience a false positive, leading to unfair consequences. Fortunately, new technologies aim to improve accuracy and fairness.
Cannabix Technologies Inc. (CSE: BLO) (OTC: BLOZF) is developing THC breath analysis tools that could provide point-of-care solutions that detect marijuana use within a short period of time after consumption. The result is a solution that law enforcement and workplace officials could use to ensure safety and compliance.
For more information, visit the company’s website.
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