Italy plans random drug testing of healthcare staff

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 21 February 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d1185
  1. Michael Day
  1. 1Milan

In a move that has the largely unanimous backing of health unions the Italian government is planning random drug testing of clinical staff.

Under the plans medical and nursing staff will be notified 24 hours before an impending test for drug misuse. A positive test result will see the health worker suspended while external assessors carry out a second test.

If this too is positive the doctor or nurse will be removed from their “sensitive” clinical role. But the director of the prime minister’s antidrug abuse department, Giovanni Serpelloni, emphasised that “they will not be …

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