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Unit Prevention Leader (UPL) FAQ

Frequently asked questions are categorized by section.

Drug Testing View

Q. What is the maximum time for specimens in temporary storage?

There is no specified time limit that a sample has to reach the testing laboratory and there is no specified time limit on how long the samples can be stored. Our guidance is to send samples to the lab as soon as possible in order to maintain the integrity and stability of the sample. The most important thing is that the chain of custody appropriately reflects the collection date, time the sample was placed in and removed from temporary storage, and ship date to the lab. It is important that the samples remain in temporary storage under strict chain of custody the entire time they are waiting to be shipped.

The Commander needs to understand, however, that the metabolites that are tested for by our labs degrade over time, especially in extreme temperatures. Therefore, these specimens may all test negative due to metabolite degradation.

Q. What has changed with regard to Unit Sweeps? Why?

Unit Inspection (IU) testing, or unit sweeps, can be conducted on any individually identifiable element. Battalion commanders should conduct periodic unit sweeps. The most effective programs use IU testing in addition to and supplementary to a good random drug testing program. IU testing will not be used as a means of testing a Soldier the commander suspects of abusing drugs but does not have sufficient probable cause to conduct a PO collection. The battalion commander should ensure that the number of specimens collected under the IU test basis is no more than 75 percent of the number of Inspection random (IR) specimens submitted for testing annually.

UPL Certification / Deployment View

Q. When does the 18 month certification for Unit Prevention Leaders (UPLs) take effect?

If a UPL receives their certification after 2 February 2009 (the publication date for AR 600-85), the installation ASAP staff can certify that Soldier for up to 18 month before he or she requires recertification. For any UPLs who were current and certified on 14 January 2009, the installation ADCOs are authorized to extend that Soldiers certification by 6 months, up to the new 18 month period. However, if a Soldier's certification had lapsed prior to 14 January, his or her certification cannot be extended. This 18 month certification period does NOT pertain to Soldier certified via the online program; online certification is valid for 12 months or until the Soldier redeploys to home station.

Q. How do I sign-up for online UPL training?

UPL online training is only authorized for those Soldiers who are currently deployed. Soldiers can register for the deployed UPL certification at the following link:
Register for UPL Certification.

Q. I was certified while I was in garrison, but I am now deployed and my UPL certification is due to expire, do I have to recertify or will my certification be valid until I redeploy?

The UPL certification will expire according on the expiration date listed on the UPL certificate of training. The Solider will have to recertify in order to conduct military collection IAW AR 600-85. Soldiers can register for the deployed UPL recertification at the following link:
Register for UPL Recertification.

Q. While deployed, is there a way that we can see if drug test have been received and results posted?

The shortest route to it is to login using the AKO page, enter the page, and click on the link in the GREEN BOX. This tool is to be used by deployed Commanders or their duly appointed representative acting on the Commander's behalf who submitted urinalysis specimens using a CT base area code. You must enter the 6 character Unit Identification Code (UIC) EXACTLY as it appears on the Unit Ledger for that collection [i.e., 0 (zero) versus O (the letter "O")]. Your UPL should have a copy of the Unit Ledger.

DTP/Computer Issues View

Q. I cannot import my roster into the DTP.

If you have Office 2007, you may have to save your file using version 97/2003; DTP lite does not work well with the upgrade. Make sure your roster does not have an empty row between the header and the Soldier information. Make sure you only have one active record (tab) in your Excel spreadsheet. Make sure the SSN is formatted correctly.

Q. I cannot install the full version of the DTP onto my workstation.

You must have administrative rights to load the full version of the DTP, or to upgrade the existing DTP, on a workstation. So, you will need to contact your local IMO/S6 of assistance. Once the DTP is loaded, you will need to have 'full access control' of the C:\Program Files\DOD Drug Testing Program folder and its subfolders. Open Windows Explorer, right-click on the DTP folder shown above, select 'Properties', and then select the 'Security' tab. Click once on the 'Users' group in the upper window, and click the 'Full Control' box in the Allow column. Then click the Ok button. Now all users on this workstation will be able to sign into and use the DTP. The reason you need the full access controlis that the DTP database tables are 'encrypted at rest'. The first thing the program does when you log in is extract the tables and write them to the DOD DTP & DATA folders there on the 'C' drive.

Q. I am locked out of the DTP, how can I gain access?

If you are in garrison, you will need to contact your local Army Substance Abuse Program office for support. If you are deployed you can send an email to the Drug Testing Branch for assistance.

Drug Information View

Q. What substances are banned?

AR 600-85, paragraphs 4-2 o - q, state: Article 112a, Uniform Code of Military Justice; specifically prohibits the unlawful use of the following substances: opium, heroin, cocaine, amphetamine, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), methamphetamine, phencyclidine, barbituric acid, marijuana, and any compound or derivative of any such substance. Article 112a, UCMJ, also prohibits the unlawful use of any other substance prescribed by the President or listed in Schedules I through V of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812). In addition, this regulation prohibits Soldiers from using Hemp or products containing Hemp oil. It also prohibits using the following substances for the purpose of inducing excitement, intoxication, or stupefaction of the central nervous system. This provision is not intended to prohibit the otherwise lawful use of alcoholic beverages:

  • Controlled substance analogues (designer drugs)
  • Chemicals, propellants, or inhalants (huffing)
  • Dietary supplements that are banned by the United States Food and Drug Administration
  • Prescription or over-the-counter drugs and medications (when used in a manner contrary to their intended medical purpose or in excess of the prescribed dosage.
  • Naturally occurring substances (to include but not limited to Salvia Divinorum, Jimson Weed, etc.)

Violations of paragraph 4-2q may subject offenders to punishment under the UCMJ and/or administrative action. Paragraph 4-2q is not intended to prohibit the otherwise lawful use of alcoholic beverages or tobacco products. If a commander has any question regarding whether a substance or its use is prohibited by this provision, they should contact the servicing judge advocate before initiating any adverse action.

Q. Are dietary supplements authorized for use?

Ephedra, also called Ma Huang, is a source of ephedrine alkaloids that, when chemically synthesized, are regulated as drugs. FDA has warned consumers against the use of dietary supplements containing ephedra since June, 1997, and banned these products after research confirmed that ephedrine alkaloids raise blood pressure and otherwise stress the circulatory system. FDA guide for dietary supplements. View: FDA Warning to Consumers about Tainted Weight Loss Products.

Q. Can a Soldier be tested for Salvia Divinorum?

As long as the commander has probable cause and JAG concurs, Soldiers can be tested for Salvia. Follow the collection procedures in the Special Drug Test Requests Information Paper.

Q. Is there a list of substances the commander should be aware of?

View: Drugs and Chemicals of Concern

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Page Last Modified: Sep 24, 2009 (EDT)