Bill to Drug Test Pharma Employees Filed in U.S. House of Representatives

A bill introduced February 18, 2014 in the U.S. House of Representatives would require registered manufacturers and distributors of controlled substances identified under the Controlled Substances Act to perform criminal background checks and drug testing for employees with access to controlled substances. The measure, “Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2013” (H.R. 4069), would require registrants, as a condition of registration, “(A) to obtain a criminal background check on each of the registrant’s employees who has or will have access to facility areas where controlled substances under the registrant’s possession or control are stored, such as a cage, vault, or safe; and (B) to perform drug testing on each such employee in accordance with the Federal and State law.” The background checks would have to be conducted at least every two years, and upon hire, once the bill was enacted. Civil penalty provisions for failing to comply with the new mandates are included in the law. The Attorney General would have authority to issue regulations and guidelines to carry out the amendments. The bill has been referred to the House Energy and Commerce, and Judiciary Committees.

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