Appropriate Urine Drug Testing in Substance Use Disorders: Clinical Consensus Recommendations

When used appropriately, urine drug testing and medication monitoring in substance use disorders can provide objective data that healthcare practitioners may employ in the diagnosis, active treatment, and recovery phases of care. A project to develop professional consensus on the appropriate use of UDT in identifying and treating substance use disorders was necessitated by a general lack of clinical knowledge and standards. This presentation will focus on a review of clinical indicators, scientific methods, patient-centered substance use testing, and the recommendations on testing from this clinical consensus project.


Title: Appropriate Urine Drug Testing in Substance Use Disorders: Clinical Consensus Recommendations
Air Date: Tuesday, November 10, 2015
Time: 10:00 AM Pacific Standard Time
Duration: 1 hour, 3 minutes
Objectives: Upon completion of this session participants will be able to:

  • Discuss the clinical need and value of UDT in the diagnosis and treatment of SUD.
  • Outline the clinical consensus recommendations for UDT in diagnosis and treatment of SUD related to:
    • Test methods & selection
    • Practice recommendations
    • Test frequency based on stages of treatment and recovery
  • List reasons for medically necessary and appropriate UDT.
  • Document reasons for drug testing, review of test results and use of results in the treatment plan to support medical necessity.


Andrea Barthwell, MD, FASAM

Dr. Andrea Barthwell is a nationally acclaimed speaker. Dr. Barthwell is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of the global health care and policy-consulting firm EMGlobal LLC and Director at Two Dreams. President George W. Bush nominated and the United States Senate confirmed her to serve as Deputy Director for Demand Reduction in the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) from January 2002–July 2004. As a member of the President’s sub-cabinet, Dr. Barthwell

was a principal advisor in the Executive Office of the President (EOP) on policies aimed at reducing the demand for illicit drugs. Dr. Barthwell received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Wesleyan University, and a Doctor of Medicine from the University of Michigan Medical School.

Dr. Barthwell is a past president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine and in 2003 she received the Betty Ford Award, given by the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse.

Steven D. Passik, PhD

Former Vice President of Clinical Research and Advocacy Millennium Health

Steven D. Passik, PhD is the former Vice President of Clinical Research and Advocacy at Millennium Health. He previously served on the faculty at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, as professor of psychiatry and anesthesiology. He was section co-editor for the opioid pain and addiction section of Pain Medicine, served on the editorial board of the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management and has been a reviewer for many peer reviewed journals, including The Clinical Journal of Pain. Dr. Passik was editor in chief of the National Cancer Institute’s PDQ Supportive Care Editorial Board. He was named a fellow of Division 28 of the American Psychological Association (Psychopharmacology & Substance Abuse) and awarded a Mayday Fund Fellowship in Pain and Society. An author of more than 120 journal articles, 60 book chapters, and 59 abstracts, he speaks nationally and internationally on pain, addiction and the pain/addiction interface. Dr. Passik received his doctorate in clinical psychology from the New School for Social Research, New York, and was a chief fellow, Psychiatry Service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York.

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