Why Does Cost-Per-Positive Matter Most?

Because it is an Objective-Based Measurement of the drug testing investment.
Know your objectives to calculate your costs.

Today, your drug testing costs may not return the results you look for. In other words, the services you pay for are lagging behind drug trends. A common question is “how much does a drug test cost?”  However, a better question might be what it costs to identify one user. The cost for each user identified-your cost-per-positive-may be higher than you think.

In the midst of a pandemic, an epidemic has raged. But sadly it has largely remained a second-page news item. For example, since 2018, overdose rates have exploded nearly 50%.  And synthetic opioids dominate the mix. As a result, these drugs account for  3/4 of all drug deaths in 2021 (see Centers for Disease Control table).  Because these drugs are quickly metabolized, they slip past urine and oral fluids tests.  Consequently, a hair drug test is the best hedge against these dangerous drugs.

Chart shows huge increases in fentanyl, cocaine and stimulants use in 2021.

In light of these daunting statistics, your drug testing investment may exceed the value returned. And your testing solution may not be keeping up with evolving trends. Considering this, ask yourself the question other companies ask.

Is my test cost-effective? Am I considering and calculating its true cost?

chart defines price as transactional and cost as value based
Price vs. Cost. Not even close to the same things.

“Price” and “cost” are not two sides of the same coin. To clarify, while price is an exchange of funds for goods; drug testing price is an example. Cost is an exchange of funds to achieve an objective, as identifying one user. In this sense, “Cost” considers value delivered as opposed to a simple purchase transaction. Despite this, many companies invest in drug testing without really knowing whether their drug testing investment is delivering their objectives at lowest cost. Are you?

Cost-Per-Positive is an Objective-Based Measurement of Value.

The cost to identify a single drug user is the best indicator of true cost. In other words,  an accurate reflection of drug testing cost is what you spend for each positive test result. While both price and a test’s detection rate contribute, the latter is the key influencer. Generally speaking, a test that detects more drugs delivers the lowest cost for each drug user identified.

Simple and Accurate Calculation.

The Cost-Per-Positive calculation is a simple, accurate calculation.  More importantly, it characterizes true drug testing costs. And it may surprise you to see that Psychemedics’ hair drug test cost is the lowest by far. To do this, it factors in whether or not the objective—identifying a drug user—is achieved and at what cost for each user.

chart shows Test Costs divided by Positives equals cost-per-positive
Numbers Never Lie.

Costs-Per-Positive fall as detection rates increase. As can be seen in the chart below, a higher rate contributes to a lower Cost-Per-Positive. Generally speaking, urine testing yields positive rates between 1-2%. In addition, many drugs evade detection by a urine test. In particular, a urine test often misses drugs that are quickly metabolized. Notably, these include opioids, cocaine, and amphetamines/ methamphetamines. And these drugs have exploded in use. Because these drugs slip by, the result is a lower overall positive rate.  As a consequence, urine or other fluids deliver significantly higher costs to detect users.

Chart shows that Psychemedics Cost for each user identified is significantly lower than urine testing.