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Testing for Unintended Drug Ingestion

Vaden Health Center offers a drug test for Stanford students who believe they may have consumed a substance that they did not intend to consume. Please review the answers to some of the most common questions.

1. What is the test for unintended drug ingestion?

It is a urine test that detects many drugs and other substances in your body. Your clinician may order the test to help you know if your body contains a drug(s) that you did not intend to ingest.

  • For round-the-clock assistance in deciding whether to request this service, please call Vaden Health Center’s Medical Advice line at 650-498-2336, ext. 1.

2. Why is it important to provide the urine sample as soon as possible?

The urine sample should be collected as soon as possible after the suspected incident because with increasing time the drug(s) may be more difficult or impossible to detect.

  • Depending on the drug, it may be found in urine for less than 12 hours or more than 72 hours.

3. How can I get the test done?

The urine sample must be collected at a medical facility, either Vaden Health Center’s medical clinic or Stanford University Medical Center Emergency Department. For Vaden, if possible, please call 650-498-2336, ext. 1, or come directly to the clinic.

  • From fall through spring quarters, Vaden’s medical clinic is open nearly every morning beginning at 8 am on the weekdays and 11 am on the weekends.
  • For exact clinic hours throughout the year, please visit vaden.stanford.edu/hours.

4. What may the test show?

Any drug or substance in your system may show up as a positive test, including alcohol, prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, and recreational drugs.

  • Carefully review with your clinician any medications and other drugs you have taken.
  • You will not be prosecuted on the basis of illegal drugs found by this test, nor will Stanford take disciplinary action.

5. Who will have access to the test result?

The information will be part of your confidential medical record. You decide who can see the results, but there may be exceptions required by law. Your clinician would be required to report the incident to police:

  • if you are a minor
  • if there is a reasonable suspicion that you are a victim of a crime
  • if certain types of drugs are found
  • if there is concern for the safety of the public (no identifying information will be provided)
  • for statistical purposes (no identifying information will be provided)

If there is a report to the police, you can choose whether or not to participate in any investigation.

6. Can the test result be used as evidence in a court of law?

A urine sample sent to our clinical laboratory would likely not meet the requirements to be legal evidence. However, at Vaden Health Center you can request that a Vaden clinician separate a portion of the urine sample and give it to a campus law enforcement officer to hold as legal evidence should you decide later to pursue the matter through the criminal justice system.

  • We encourage you to consider this option.
  • This can be done either anonymously or identified with your name. Either way, you are not required to participate in a police investigation.
  • Let your clinician know if you would like to consider this option.

7. If I want to file a report with university officials, what should I do?

We encourage you to report the incident to university officials.

  • They can help you access university support services and help you with academic, housing or other accommodations and support, if needed.
  • Later you may choose to share the test result with university officials.
  • The test result can be presented as evidence in a student conduct or other investigatory proceeding.

8. What will the test cost?

There is no charge at Vaden Health Center for undergraduate and graduate students who are enrolled on the main Stanford campus and have paid the Campus Health Service Fee. A test done at Stanford University Medical Center Emergency Department is billed to the student’s health insurance, which may result in an out-of-pocket charge to the student.

9. When will I get the result?

Your clinician will contact you by secure message when the results are available. Typically, this is 3 weeks after your sample is obtained because the sample is not tested at Stanford; it is sent to an outside laboratory.

  • We encourage you to follow up with a clinician at Vaden Health Center.
  • Your clinician will continue to monitor your health, refer you to resources and help you make the best decisions.

10. What if I may have been sexually assaulted?

If you may have been sexually assaulted, we urge you to have the proper medical examination and sample collection.

  • This is done at a specialized center, such as the Santa Clara Valley Medical Center.
  • The exam can include a urine test for drugs, when appropriate.
  • We also encourage you to report the incident to law enforcement as well as university officials.
  • A complete listing of resources for students who have experienced sexual assault or relationship violence can be found at Stanford’s website notalone.stanford.edu.

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