All New Hampshire Cities

Drug Screening Law Faces Firing Squad

For prescription drug addicts working in healthcare, every day is like a being child who lives in a candy store. That is, unless they are David Kwiatkowski, who initiated a Hepatitis C outbreak when he swapped some tainted syringes for painkillers last summer at Exeter Hospital.

New Hampshire lawmakers are scratching their heads to determine how to keep this scenario from reoccurring. In the hopes that he may have the answer, Tim Copeland, R-Stratham, sponsored a bill that would require hospital workers to undergo periodic drug testing.

But that’s a violation of the workers’ constitutional rights according to Devon Chaffee, New Hampshire’s ACLU executive director. During a committee meeting this past Tuesday, she claimed that there is no empirical evidence showing that periodical testing will prevent the type of outbreak that happened last summer.

Chaffee was only one of a number of critics that came out to argue against the proposed bill. Among others were nursing home operators, a doctor, NH’s American Civil Liberties Union, and the NH Hospital Association.

Other critics based their arguments on a number of topics ranging from the cost of the bill’s implementation to its unreliability. Many lawmakers considered it an overreaction to the events at Exeter. Still others claim it is an example of the government “overreaching” into the private healthcare sector.

Even the proposed legislation’s wording was criticized for being too vague. Critics were concerned that the fact that Kwiatkowski was first contracted as a traveling medical technician, he may not have been required to undergo testing under the initial draft of the bill.

President of Occupational Drug Testing, LLC, Ryan Quintal, was the only one in Copeland’s corner that day. “In health care, individuals with problem of drug abuse and addiction cannot be ignored,” he said on behalf of the bill.

A number of New Hampshire’s health care leaders are working with Copeland to amend the bill’s wording in order to accommodate many of the concerns brought up by Tuesday’s testimonies. He will present the amended proposal in another hearing on March 5 – this time before the Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs Committee.


The contents of the web site (the "Site") are for informational purposes only. The Information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, tests or treatment, and does not create a physician-patient relationship. This Site and Deep Dive Media ("the Company") are not responsible for sending you to, referring you to or making recommendations about a doctor, a professional practice or health insurance company. NO LICENSED PHYSICIAN-PATIENT RELATIONSHIP IS CREATED BY USING INFORMATION PROVIDED BY OR THROUGH THE USE OF THIS SITE INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, TREATMENT CENTER REFERRAL FUNCTIONS OR LINKS TO OTHER SITES. The Company makes no guarantees, representations or warranties, whether expressed or implied, with respect to professional qualifications, expertise, quality of work or other information herein. Further the Company does not in any way endorse the individuals described herein. In no event shall the Company be liable to you or anyone else for any decision made or action taken by you in reliance on such information. You are STRONGLY ADVISED to perform your own due diligence prior to selecting a health care professional with activities, such as making confirming telephone calls to the appropriate licensing authorities to verify listed credentials and education. In addition you can further verify information about a physician or medical provider by confirming with the doctor's office, your current physician, the medical association relative to the doctor's specialty and your state medical board. See our Legal Statement for the complete terms and conditions governing your use of the Site.


Why Did You Visit This Site?
I am looking for treatment
A friend or family member is looking for treatment
Just Looking for Information
Total votes: 99
Call 1-855-216-4673 anytime to speak with an addiction specialist. Insurance Accepted.