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Urine Drug Screening (UDS) Of UMMS Students

The University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) is committed to providing the highest level of educational activity and professional conduct throughout all programs. As such, it has a responsibility to ensure that students are functioning free from the influence of illicit or illegal substances. The use of controlled (unless prescribed by a clinician) or illegal substances, including medical marijuana, is prohibited.

Hospitals are accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) and must maintain compliance with all current rules, regulations and standards. JCAHO standard HR 1.20 requires that all individuals involved in the delivery of health care must comply with applicable health screening requirements established by organizations. As such, anyone who is involved with patient care, including UMMS students, must meet the requirements of the clinical site. This may include pre-rotation testing for drugs of abuse through urine drug screening (UDS). In order to comply with the requirements of UMMS affiliated institutions that require UDS, drug testing must be completed before students are allowed to begin their rotation/assignment at the clinical site. 

The AAMC Uniform Clinical Training Affiliation Agreement states that “The school will also inform students that they may be required to undergo a drug test or other similar screening tests pursuant to the host agency’s policies and practices, and that the cost of any such test will be paid by the student, if not the host agency.”

Any student placed at a clinical site requiring UDS will be informed by the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) about the UDS requirement. The Office of Student Affairs sends email reminders about this requirement and process twice yearly, in August and April. UMMS has set forth a UDS procedure, as outlined in the UDS procedure. Students must comply with this process as they must comply with all UMMS policies and procedures. Failure to comply with UMMS policies may result in disciplinary action up to and including suspension of all educational and clinical activities, and possible dismissal from the School of Medicine.

Baystate Health System requires UDS for all of their employees, residents, and students engaged in clinical work in their health system. As such, upon matriculation, all PURCH students will undergo a UDS before beginning their clinical work in year one (1). Testing will be completed at the UMMMC Employee Health Services in Worcester, as outlined in the UDS procedure. In order to comply with the requirements of UMMS affiliated institutions that require UDS, including Baystate Health, UDS must be completed before students are allowed to begin their rotation/assignment at the clinical site.

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