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Library: Policy

317:30-5-20.1. Drug screening and testing

Revised 9-12-22

(a) Purpose. Drug Testing is performed for undisclosed drug use and/or abuse, and to verify compliance with treatment. Testing for drugs of abuse to monitor treatment compliance should be included in the treatment plan for pain management when chronic opioid therapy is involved.

(1) Qualitative (presumptive) drug testing may be used to determine the presence or absence of a drug or drug metabolite in the sample and is expressed as a positive or negative result. Qualitative testing can be performed by a CLIA waived or moderate complexity test, or by a high complexity testing method.

(2) Quantitative (definitive) drug testing is specific to the drug or metabolite being tested and is expressed as a numeric result or numeric level which verifies concentration.

(3) Specimen validity testing is used to determine if a specimen has been diluted, adulterated or substituted. Specimen validity tests include, but are not limited to, creatinine, oxidants, specific gravity, urine pH, nitrates and alkaloids.

(b) Eligible providers. Providers performing drug testing should have CLIA certification specific to the level of testing performed as described in 317:30-5-20(1)(A).

(c) Compensable services. Drug testing must be ordered by the physician or non-physician provider and must be individualized to the patient and the patient's medical history or assessment indicators as evidenced in the medical documentation.

(1) Compensable testing must be medically indicated as evidenced by patient specific indications in the medical record.

(A) Testing is only compensable if the results will affect patient care.

(B) Drugs or drug classes being tested should reflect only those likely to be present.

(2) The frequency of drug screening and/or testing is determined by the patient's history, patient's physical assessment, behavioral assessment, risk assessment, treatment plan and medication history.

(3) Quantitative (definitive) drug testing may be indicated for the following:

(A) To identify a specific substance or metabolite that is inadequately detected or undetectable by a qualitative (presumptive) test; or

(B) To definitively identify specific drugs in a large family of drugs; or

(C) To identify drugs when a definitive concentration of a drug is needed to guide management; or

(D) To identify a negative, or confirm a positive, qualitative (presumptive) result that is inconsistent with a patient's self-report, presentation, medical history or current prescribed medication plan; or

(E) To identify a non-prescribed medication or illicit use for ongoing safe prescribing of controlled substances.

(d) Non-compensable services. The following tests are not medically necessary and therefore not covered by the OHCA:

(1) Specimen validity testing is considered a quality control measure and is not separately compensable;

(2) Drug testing for patient sample sources of saliva, oral fluids, or hair;

(3) Testing of two different specimen types (urine and blood) from the same patient on the same date of service;

(4) Drug testing for medico-legal purposes (court ordered drug screening) or for employment purposes;

(5) Non-specific, blanket panel or standing orders for drug testing, routine testing of therapeutic drug levels, or drug panels which have no impact to the member's plan of care;

(6) Scheduled and routine drug testing (i.e. testing should be random);

(7) Reflex testing for any drug is not medically indicated without specific documented indications;

(8) Confirmatory testing exceeding three specific drug classes at an interval of greater than every thirty (30) days will require specific documentation in the medical record to justify the medical necessity of testing; and

(9) Quantitative (definitive) testing of multiple drug levels that are not specific to the patient's medical history and presentation are not allowed. Justification for testing for each individual drug or drug class level must be medically indicated as reflected in the medical record documentation. 

(e) Documentation requirements. The medical record must contain documents to support the medical necessity of drug screening and/or testing. Medical records must be furnished on request and may include, but are not limited to, the following:

(1) A current treatment plan;

(2) Patient history and physical;

(3) Review of previous medical records if treated by a different physician for pain management;

(4) Review of all radiographs and/or laboratory studies pertinent to the patient's condition;

(5) Opioid agreement and informed consent of drug testing, as applicable;

(6) List of prescribed medications;

(7) Risk assessment, as identified by use of a validated risk assessment tool/questionnaire, with appropriate risk stratification noted and utilized;

(8) Office/provider monitoring protocols, such as random pill counts; and

(9) Review of prescription drug monitoring data or pharmacy profile as warranted.

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