Why You Might Be Drug Tested During Labor

“I just need you to sign this, saying that you understand that we will be testing your urine for all medications,” I say, handing the urine specimen cup to my patient who has come in to the hospital. 

She looks up at me, confusion in her eyes, but quickly nods her assent. 

“Ok, sure,” she mumbles, marking her initials on the cup with a shaky hand. 

I initial next to hers and wait while she produces a sample (standard drug testing protocol, right?) and then donning some gloves, quickly seal the specimen up in a bag to be sent down to the lab for testing. 

No, I'm not some drug marshall on an addiction floor of the hospital; I'm on the labor and delivery ward. 

{ MORE: Stop Teen Medicine Abuse }

drug testing
Image via Flickr/ Leonel Ponce

Drug testing on all women who come in to have a baby is becoming more standard in the labor and delivery ward. For example, at the hospital I worked at, administrators bounced back and forth on what the proper policy of drug testing should be–should they only test at-risk mothers? Should they tell women about it? Could women refuse the drug test?

In the end, it was decided that the right and ethical thing to do was to drug test all women upon admission and to have them sign for complete disclosure, due to the nature of the testing. Although I was surprised that there wasn't more outrage over the testing, most women simply complied without a word.

And the testing definitely brought up results–women you would never guess were using drugs were able to be counseled, and in some rare cases, had their children removed from them after being evaluated by Protective Services.

And although the policy may sound easy enough–test all, no questions asked–it also brings up some ethical concerns, like do women have the right to refuse? What happens if they refuse the test? And what about false positives? (Drug screens are notorious for false positives.)

Myself, I definitely take some offense to the test. Why should my insurance money go to pay for drug testing when I'm not on drugs? And if something as simple as Sudafed could trigger a positive result, warranting an automatic refer all to CPS, could  a mother be flagged unfairly forever as an unfit mother?

Currently, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists — although it states that at least 4% of pregnant women report illicit drug use (the number is even higher among teenaged mothers) — does not have an official policy for universal screening for drug use. In fact, despite the staggering cost of this abuse, a number in the billions, it reports several obstacles that prevent tackling the issue of drug use in pregnancy, such as doctors who don't know the rules about reporting the abuse or getting referrals for treatment. 

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The ACOG recommends that all women receive a verbal or written screening, basically with a nurse or doctor asking them about their drug and drinking habits, but cautions against routine urine screening, stating that “urine drug testing is an adjunct to detect or confirm suspected substance use, but should be performed only with the patient’s consent and in compliance with state laws. Pregnant women must be informed of the potential ramifications of a positive test result, including any mandatory reporting requirements.”

Did you have to have drug testing during your labor?

What do you think?

Why You Might Be Drug Tested During Labor

Chaunie Brusie is a coffee mug addict, a labor and delivery nurse turned freelance writer, and a young(ish) mom of four. She is the author of "Tiny Blue Lines: Preparing For Your Baby, Moving Forward In Faith, & Reclaiming Your Life In An Unplanned Pregnancy" and "The Moments That Made You A Mother". She also runs Passion Meets Practicality, a community of tips + inspiration for work-at-home mothers. ... More

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72 comments

  1. Profile photo of Angela Angela says:

    I believe that it is important for everyone to be tested that is going to labor and delivery even though my experience with being honest with doctors about my drug history and being in treatment at the current time caused me a world of pain and to be treated as if I had ten crack babies throughout my life I am going to look into suing the hospital I had my daughter at due to the bedside Manner and the way that I was treated by the doctors and nurses that are supposed to be professionals because I was honest about my history I was treated terribly by this I mean nurses did not come in to check on me after they took my daughter from me and put her in the nursery claiming that she had a heart condition I wasn’t understanding what was going on until a CPS case worker came to me and the room I was in and told me that the hospital called and said that my daughter tested positive for methamphetamines when she was born but they made a mistake it was a different child that tested positive for methamphetamines they still took my daughter from me put her in the nursery they would not let me be alone with her they had to do open investigation even though all my test came back negative I even went down a week later and did a hair follicle that came back negative 2 I know how to deal with CPS in their investigation I had to stay with a safety monitor because they didn’t want me alone with my baby in my house it was a complete nightmare dealing with them for 3 months where they did their investigation and doing everything they asked you to do and for them to still treat you like you’re a crackhead or that you were doing something bad your child even though you proved with hair follicle test and random drug testing and all tests were negative they were still trying to stay in my life making me go through in-home services when I have a strong support system and I’m in drug treatment now and I have been for years now sober and clean it has been one of the worst experiences of my life because I was honest with the doctors about my history I’ve definitely learned my lesson. The nurses in the nursery

  2. Profile photo of Drue Drue says:

    this is an interesting article

  3. Profile photo of Kelly Kelly says:

    Start drug testing the fathers/boyfriends/partners and see how quickly the policy changes. Women are always being trampled on by this sort of thing, but men never are.

  4. Profile photo of laura laura says:

    Hi..,
    I went to the er due to pain i was having and had a positive urine test for meth. I stayed in the hospital for 2 nights due to high blood pressure and a kidney infection. I went back about two weeks ago due to my blood pressure being high again. Although I was discharged the same day. the doctor made it known to me i had a positive test the last time i was there. I told her i understand and that i’m sober. she asked me what am i doing to stay clean. I told her I have been going to aa meetings and my family is my safety net.

    shud i be worried at all that cps might be called on me after i give birth? will meth be detected when my baby is born when they do newborn screening?

  5. Profile photo of Scottie Scottie says:

    So I don’t know what to do, a dear friend of mines ex girlfriend is 6 months into her pregnancy and I know she uses drugs often. The father of the unborn child haves tried enormous times to get her out of the situation but unsussesful. The doctor knows nothing about the drug abuse. So what can the father of the unborn child do so his son haves a chance of survival.

    • Profile photo of Megan KlayEditor Megan Klay says:

      Hi Scottie – I’m really sorry to hear this. Has your friend communicated this to her doctor? He/she will be able to get the appropriate people involved. Best wishes!

  6. Profile photo of chantelle chantelle says:

    I am thinking that it varies by state and hospital. In Missouri now any women who is on medicaid is immediately drug tested but if they have their own insurance they only drug test if there is suspected abuse or a low amount of prenatal care.

  7. Profile photo of Nina Nina says:

    I was told by my OB at my 37 week appointment that they would need to test my urine for drugs because I hadn’t received “that much” prenatal care, and it’s “standard practice” for women who received “less than optimal” prenatal care. I didn’t see my OB for 6 weeks between weeks 20 and 26 because I started a new job and couldn’t take time off. I started seeing my OB at 5 weeks and made every appointment before and after that 6 week period. I complied with the request, but I was extremely offended.

    My daughter was born the next week, at 38 weeks, and they told me they would need to test HER urine and stool for opiates, as again, I’d received “less than optimal” care during my pregnancy. I asked if I could refuse if it was something that I was uncomfortable with. The nurse told me that I shouldn’t be uncomfortable with it. I told her that I hadn’t actually asked what she thought I should be uncomfortable with, only if I could refuse. She said that I could and they would call social services on me.

  8. Profile photo of Melissa Melissa says:

    I don’t remember being tested, I had my son 5 months ago. I don’t think they should unless there is a reason to suspect. My insurance shouldn’t have to pay for it and I shouldn’t have to pay for it out of pocket when I don’t use drugs.

  9. Profile photo of Jenny Jenny says:

    Everyone against drug use during pregnancy better also be against any painkillers during birth. Epidurals are no different than abusing opiates as far as the baby is concerned. Secondly, if doctors are giving painkillers to teenage girls during birth, how reluctant do you think they will be to have another baby if they associate having unprotected sex with an easy, dreamy narcotic-haze induced birthing experience. Birth is not supposed to be painless! And a painless birth hurts the baby in this case! Obviously a mother with an IQ of 90 is not going to realize or care about something like this, which is why it is the responsibility of those who know best to stop being hypocrites and stop trying to test for drug use and then turn around and give a pregnant women drugs! Just because it comes from an official looking bottle and is administered by a nurse doesn’t make it any different than a shot of heroin or a line of coke as far as the baby’s developing brain is concerned.

    Secondly, you women need to stand up for your rights! If some hospital employee tries to coerce you into having unwanted tests, threaten to leave and take your business elsewhere. If they don’t like that they can go to hell. If they try to keep you there against your will- don’t put up a fight, pretend to agree, and then when they go back to whatever they were doing, pull the fire alarm and sneak out the back door in the confusion. Stop acting like mindless sheep!

    Most importantly- DON’T ADMIT TO ANYTHING! If you’re stupid enough to admit to something that they have no right asking about in the first place then you deserve whatever you get. You’d be amazed how many people go to jail every year who literally hand the cops and prosecutor the entire case in a little bow-topped package. KEEP YOUR F***ING MOUTH SHUT and ask for a lawyer if they try to accuse you of anything! Suspicion means nothing by itself until your dumbass confirms it, then they can write in your file “patient admits to long term chronic drug abuse” after you tell them that you smoked two joins five years apart over the last ten years. They will always twist your words to whatever suits them best, and then your stupid self goes and signs the form where they tell you to, without reading it, and you don’t get a copy, and you have no recourse whatsoever later on when its time to address the issue. If you are going to get treatment for drug abuse you should do so in an anonymous setting. You don’t want that on your record under your real name. I don’t care what hippa says currently, there is no guarantee that your medical records wont be used against you sometime in the future. Someone can always make a mistake and everyone knows that computer security is only good until it isn’t.

    I agree that anyone careless enough to do drugs or alcohol while pregnant should not be allowed to have kids, but at the same time the hospital has no right to test you against your will. They are being paid for their services ffs. If it were a free service then sure, test away; but anyone paying for health care has the right to say what they are allowed to do with your body fluids.

    And teach your kids how to deal with people at the door ffs. If CPS or anyone else makes an unannounced visit while the parents aren’t home, nobody should be opening the door at all. Install a camera and use it and teach your kids to use it. They aren’t going to break down the door if they think nobody is home, don’t open the door and don’t say anything and they will go away. Jesus grow some brains people.

    • Profile photo of Briana Briana says:

      so it’s okay to be on drugs and hide that from your doctors, they shouldn’t dare try to test you and if they do you leave, but taking medication to ease birth is wrong? I”m sorry I don’t understand, taking drugs while pregnant hurts the child’s development and growth, but taking medication to ease labor is a very short lived process at the end of pregnancy when the most vital parts of the child are already developed. You make no sense, the way that you’re talking is it’s okay to be on drugs and do whatever you want while pregnant, but once it’s time to give birth you better not take that epidural. It’s not okay to take drugs during pregnancy, that is child abuse. And considering the way you talk about teaching your kids to hide from cps you must have some experience there right? That’s what’s wrong with the world today, people that are trying to help and do the right thing are being turned into the bad guys by people who are doing wrong.

      • Profile photo of kat kat says:

        bullship when there are cases out there where the child is actually in an abusive home ok go take the kids away but in so many cases i have seen cps remove children from loving homes, solely based on what cps considers to be unfit, and placed in a foster home where they get abused in most cases sexually i know because i have been through this tearing a family apart doesnt solve anything at all i have had a friend whose boyfriend beat her up cops were called he gets taken to jail and she gets her kids taken away, why if the problem went to jail, another friend whose piece of crap boyfriend raped their little girls. they tell mom.mom goes to the cops he fleas cps gets involved kids are removed from the home why mom and kids did what they supposed to do right they told somebody so they could help them not take them away from their mother who was just trying to protect them by telling the cops in the first place that just an example of another reason why kids are hesitant to speak up and on top of that what she has to do to get her kids back man im telling yall now if u get ur kids taken away and u broke its going to take u a looong time to get your kids back if u ever get them back its almost like they kidnap ur kids n hold them for ransom i think they even give u so long to pay up to do wat u gotta do if not the system becomes your childs parent and that is right i dont think so the little boy near palmdale i think it was beaten to death by mother n mothers boyfriend cps made visits to them got complaints went to the home and left stating everything in the home was fine no signs of abuse right now that little boy dead there are situations out there where cps does need to get involved and they dont get involved as much as they should then theres situations where cps needs to just back off and mind their own business cuz in most cases they are the ones who screw up a child in the long run. do not open that door a stranger is a stranger just because they are in a uniform does not make them a good guy, as for hospital drug testing what are the docs there for y did they go to school for all those years to help people rite deliver newborn babbies safely so they could have the best chance of survival the could get and the same for the mothers help a woman have the safest most comfortable delivery they could have right not b nosey n drug test for no reason then take a womans new born baby away then go to her other kids n take them away also thats just another excuse for a woman to have a baby in a bathroom n throw it in a dumpster i check in for a safe delivery at a hospital i dont check in to check out with my life n whole world torn apart i love my kids they r my reason for living and nurses doctors and nosey cps has no right taking them away from me or anybody else that loves their kids like i love mine

      • Profile photo of jesster131 jesster131 says:

        I’m not sure she knows what she thinks. She sounds like a paranoid schizophrenic. They can’t ask or test you. You should not do it, admit to it, or even get help under your own name. At least if you get help under your own name you have proof you got help & are trying to do the right thing for yourself & child.

  10. Profile photo of Susan Susan says:

    These comments are scary either women who think they have the right to sterilize ppl who have used any type of drug or ppl who suffered through traumatic experiences. I dont think a heroin addict who makes no attempt to change should walk out with a baby free n clear but there has to be degrees of severity. Someone who smoked pot once before they knew they were pregnant certainty dont deserve to go through that. I myself do not use drugs but while i was pregnant my doctor put me on a low dose pain killer to take as needed for my sciatic nerve in my back. I told the hospital n although me n baby tested negative they still tried to flag me n take my baby trying to convince me my son was in pain n withdrawing n should b put on morphine for 3 months in nicu. I immediately called my doctor who first told me everything would n fine, was now telling me she couldn’t control hospital policy. If i would’ve known that would happen i would have suffered through the pain n stayed “clean”. Instead i panicked, i was afraid to sleep in fear they would put my son on real drugs. They kept us for 5 days for monitoring n it was hell. Until finally a new doctor came in on the weekend n immediately released us. But it was hell my precious moments were stolen from me n who knows what my records say. Im probably flagged as a drug addict. Im honestly afraid to have more children. I agree something should b done but this policy isn’t just to all it needs to b adjusted.

  11. Profile photo of sarah sarah says:

    I really don’t remember them doing a drug test. I know I didn’t pee in a cup for them at the hospital. I did ever visit at the Dr office though so who knows. It really don’t bother me. But to avoid the false positives. If they get a positive they should to a 2nd test the next day blood or urine. I am not sure exactly what would show up for false positives and how long in your system. That is something they need to look into before turning people in to CPS. But I do know of situations that this could have saved a lot of heart ache and even lifes just by testing. Some people shouldn’t be parents. BUT… they will also see an increase of mothers having babies at home to prevent the drug test. And those would be the ones you can tell just by being in the room with them CPS should be called.

  12. Profile photo of Sarah Sarah says:

    Not only did I just have a baby 3 months ago, but I work in the labor and delivery unit where I delivered. We have a high pregnancy drug rate in our area. We do not have mandatory drug testing unless there is a history of it or probable cause.

  13. Profile photo of Tim Tim says:

    Here in Texas it’s well know that most (80%+) doctor offices for baby delivery do test you for drugs apon birth procedure.

    The only consulting with CPS is after the test is positive then they will take your new born. Lets look at the problem with CPS ,great idea in theory, they have the highest turnaround for employees and even worse track record for child reassignment success. The training for their position must not have any implications for failure or harm done by them. Why do I say this? I’ve heard stories of child neglect such as not changing the new born diper after days. Another scenario, kids little older that are seperated from parents for drugs etc get emotional (sad/angry) and don’t blend in with their new environment are the put on drugs. Now the kids in custody are getting tax dollars to drug them with heavy psychological mind/mood benders that also can be very negative towards the child’s development. With that their record is noted that they are unstable and on adult drugs moving forward. Look at the #’s for kids on drugs set up by CPS you will be amazed. I will stop there because the rest of the history I’ve herd about CPS gets very, very dark.
    I have a worker that has grown up in that system (foster care) and he bounced around at least 15 places and still is trying to pick up the pieces from a broken childhood.
    Couple that with troubled kids in school and its a formula for violence in school that kids may be so drugged up the don’t know what they are doing or to who.
    Now lets see why they are so hot to take your kid, recall Bill Clinton saying in office that he would allocate more $$$ to CPS if they met or tryed to beat the last years numbers in kids recovered from “broken homes”…..just like “Red Carpet Schools” getting funding from federal gov.
    Case point: just DON’T do DRUGS if you plan to have a kid, it can seriously compermise their life and use natural birth centers if at all possible. Follow the $$$$ and you will find corruption and always pee for enjoyment not for another man/women.

  14. Profile photo of Royal Royal says:

    I must say that I have NEVER heard of a hospital asking me to consent to giving me a drug test before I give birth, they did test my urine every time I went to the doctor but there was never a problem…..I would refuse to let them test me for drugs because that is an invasion of privacy, since I don’t do drugs especially, but if I have NEVER done drugs(unless they were prescribed for pain or some other issue) even more. I could go as far as saying if I refuse what will you do? Refuse to deliver my child, call CPS on me? Well go ahead. A COURT ORDER would be needed and I could sue you for endangering me and my child by not helping me deliver my child.

  15. Profile photo of Patricia Patricia says:

    So where exactly is the problem? Do you want to be paid for pee? If you are not a criminal who has been abusing your unborn child, you shouldn’t have a problem with someone testing your pee for drugs! They will already have asked you to “pee in a cup” so that they can test your sugar levels, so what’s the big deal? Oh, that’s right we have a Leftist in the WH, who is a former druggie himself, so now our society is supposed to allow women who choose to druggies to bring brain damaged children into the world so the taxpayers can support both of them for the rest of their lives! A womeqn who decides to take drugs should get herself fixed so she can’t make babies, they don’t deserve them, and then they won’t have to worry about having to “pee in a cup”!

  16. Profile photo of Michelle Michelle says:

    I’m one of those false positives! I just had my second child. When I got pregnant with my first child I was smoking weed. When I found out I was pregnant I quit. I obviously had one positive drug screen that was in my record now. So when I went to deliver my second child they told me due to my positive drug screen almost 5 yrs ago they would be testing me and the baby which I was ok with however really because of something from 5 yrs ago that happened at the beginning of my pregnancy I didn’t test positive when I delivered my first child anytime other than at my very first prenatal exam when I found out I was pregnant. Then they come back after testing my during delivery of my second and tell me I tested positive for amphetamines which blew my mind and really scared me because I didn’t do drugs. So they tested my baby she came up clean. They had to send mine out for further analysis took 3days to come back only to be told it was false positive! I was furious as the hospital wouldn’t allow me to breast feed due to them saying I had amphetamines in my system only to be wrong. I understand why they couldn’t let me til they hot results but by the time they did I lost 3 almost 4 days of that bonding and my baby missed out on all the good that breast milk provides.

  17. Profile photo of Rose Rose says:

    If you’ve had prenatal care your urine is tested every visit. If there was a problem your regular doctor would have caught it and offered you help. I don’t agree with the test unless there is suspected drug use.

  18. Profile photo of LB LB says:

    I was a teenager in 1997, 17 years old and I was visited by cps (I believe) after birth and was asked to sign a consent for the baby to be drug tested. I was young, alone at the time, everyone was at work. I was so scared, didn’t know what was happening and why! After all these years I never knew. Now that I read this article, it makes a little more sense as to why, I guess… I was a teen, I was a target. When my parents arrived I told them what happen, and how I was so scared something was wrong and asked are they gonna take the baby from me. It was a horrible scarry feeling. Why, they tested baby and how they tested baby and not test me, no idea. I’m 34 now and have a second child that’s 18months, I didn’t experience this “random drug test procedure at Baylor, Tx. I had my first born in La Habra, Ca which has shut down several years back. I’m mixed emotions about this because it happened to me however I do like that mothers are on drugs should get the help needed before caring for a child.

  19. Profile photo of Ilana Ilana says:

    I am 100% ok with the drug testing. The amount of false positives is not as common as the author makes the audience believe. Yes, sudafed could potentially cause a false positive but you shouldn’t be taking that medication when you’re pregnant anyways. If you have nothing to hide, then you shouldn’t be so worried about the test. This is a good thing – for everyone involved – especially the child.

    • Profile photo of Kristy Kristy says:

      False positives are more common than you believe. I was one of those false positives. Nine months of being tested at my prenatal visits were all clean but a drug test at the hospital before labor showed marijuauna in my system?? I was harassed and threatened by the hospital social worker and because of that false positive some of the nurses began treating me like garbage. I threatened to pay to get an independent drug test out of my own pocket and when that came back clean (because I knew I hadn’t taken any drugs the entire pregnancy) that I would sue for the treatment I was receiving. What do you know, 12 hours later we get a call that “oops must’ve been a false positive” but no apologies whatsoever from anyone affiliated with the hospital. They put me through hell over a false positive and no woman deserves that especially when your hormones are out of whack as it is just after having a baby. So no matter how low you think the rate of false positives are, even those few percentage of women don’t deserve to be abused just after giving birth.

      • Profile photo of Angela Angela says:

        I went thru a very similar experience ! I am looking into retaining an attorney because i feel they tortured me. The hospital staff called CPS and told them my baby tested positive for meth. When the cps lady walked in my room and told me what happened cps still had 2 investigate. I complied 110% with them and they talked down to me and treated me aweful. MY STORY IS TOO LONG & THERES SO much more! Nurses and doctors it is NOT YOUR JOB 2 judge me based on my past. Ur job is to treat

        • Profile photo of Sarah Sarah says:

          Hey I am going to hell right now I never use drugs but prior on my labor last month they said I am positive on meth.who did u talk too coz cps took all my kids and the new born and they want me to admit that I am using and I am not.same thing the hospital who’s the one called the cps

    • Profile photo of Heather Heather says:

      I think you’re wrong. We’re living in a society where women are having there rights taken away little by little. If you don’t start standing up for what you believe in, then someday they’re going to tell you how to raise your child and what you can and cannot do with your child. I’m not a drug user, but I refuse to live in a society where we are stripped of our rights.

    • Profile photo of Cara Cara says:

      I have nothing to hide, and would be against drug testing without a prior history or medically indicative reason.
      Having nothing to hide really bears no relation to why I would oppose being tested for something that – in my case – would be 100% unneccessary. I believe my doctors should instead have more direct communication with me and my health. I think there is a growing trend in the very busy medical industry to utilize less and less diagnostic procedure and less and less hands-on clinical observation and treatment. Instead, there is this reliance on remote, generic lab testing requirements and mechanical reports. I do not believe this in any way improves my medical care or my babies care. It does allow less doctors and nurses to see higher volume of patients, however.

    • Profile photo of Amanda Amanda says:

      I was also directed to take sudafed, (half of the recommended dose.) and I did take it for the final 3 months of my pregnancy. I was told that I could not take it until the third trimester, and I HAD to take the one that I had to get from the pharmacist. I would have tested positive I am sure. I guess it is lucky for my son and I both, I was not tested…

    • Profile photo of Joanna Joanna says:

      I agree with you as far as the nothing to hide then it should e no problem, however my doctors office suggested I took Sudafed although there are different kinds and some you shouldn’t take. I didn’t take the medication but just stating it is recommended sometimes.

  20. Profile photo of Kendall Kendall says:

    I am all for drug testing everyone and anyone who is pregnant. If it means that it could help save or protect an innocent life, sign me up!

  21. Profile photo of LuciaAnzures LuciaAnzures says:

    They gave me morphine and THEM took the drug test so now on my paper works it always says aske for substance abuse note any suspicious behaviors. I am so mad about that!! They try to tell me the nurse was new she ddn’t know but that’s commen sence if my information says they just gave me morphine why in the world would you test me!? -_____-

  22. Profile photo of Lianne Lianne says:

    This is extremely bothersome to me. Ive never used an illegal drug let alone while pregnant. My concern is the high rate of false positives and when you are suppsosed to be bonding and celebrating your newborn you could be dealing with a false positive and the stress of having your child(ren) possibly taken away. I have googled it and cannot find information by state as to where it is mandatory. Anyone have any idea where I can find this info by state? Should I ask my OB? I had my first over 8 years ago and I do not remember this but if it was presented to me as they were testing for medications in my system I cannot say that I would have given it a second thought,

  23. Thankfully, I had my kids when the USA still had an actual constitution and a Bill of Rights, before they became fancy toilet paper. I would have refused it. Until I commit a crime, Boone needs to play with my urine. I have a degree in psychology with special studies in neurobiology. This is a policy that is solely about the police state. As we can see by the hatred of the poor, food stamps and healthcare, we don’t care one iota about the child or the mother or the family unit, period. We care about money, celebrity and that is pretty much all we care about. If we, as a society, really did care, we would not resent children having food stamps. As long as there are enough people that keep voting GOP, we cannot say we care about kids or the family.

  24. Profile photo of April April says:

    When I went to my first apt after finding out I was pregnant, when they basically just ask questions about your family medical history and my husbands. The question came up have I ever used drugs? Or am I on drugs? I answered honestly and said yes I have smoked pot before. The nurse began to ask more question like how much? When? And are you still using? I then continued to answer honestly no I only done in occasionally. She then asked when was the last time.. It had been so long and rare that I truly didn’t know I was about too turn 28years old and the last time I could honestly remember was my 25th birthday.

    So I said THREE years ago..

    Months went on and durn my 5th month exam my mid wife explained that the state of Massachusetts has a no tolerance policy. That because I admitted to smoking pot with in the last 5years they would give me a 1 random test durn my pregnancy and 1at birth including the baby.. WHICH I WAS TOTALLY OKAY WITH ..

    We had been planning our pregnancy and we’re trying for a while. I did everything by the books even quit smoking cigarettes cold turkey they day I took the test.. My mid wife was explaining that the policy is the same for if u are currently a addict or if u were like myself that I smoked a joint THREE years prior. They treat herion the same as pot.

    I am all for the test if the policy is For EVERY PREGNANCY NO exceptions.. If they made it a federal law or policy/with a thought out process to limit the false positives. BECAUSE TRUST ME THE WHOLE TIME I WAS SO WORRIED ABOUT A FALSE POSITIVE.. because you can never trust the system.. And me admitting to it from 3 years prior from the start is what allowed that to be a possibility

    I had a friend of a friend family member that gave birth in the same hospital 2 years prior the was a heroin addict she never stopped even durn the pregnancy and because she didn’t admit to using drugs at all.. Nor did she walk in and say hey I’m a junkie..she never once got tested durn the pregnancy and the baby didn’t until two days old when she was in distress Bc of the withdrawals. Now idk about any of u BUT I have never seen a drug user that admit to using drugs most drug addicts DONT admit to being a junkie. Chances are if u admit to it your usually someone like myself that took a hit of a joint on a rare occasion many years prior of Starting to plan for a baby, AND FAR FROM A JUNKIE..

  25. Profile photo of jeannette5 jeannette5 says:

    I can totally relate to some of the comments made below. Upon my admission, I disclosed ALL of my past medical history which included use of a narcotic (prescribed just days before by my OB/Gyne, at her insistence that it was safe to use, albeit sparingly). Urine sample was obtained and hours later I was approached by a nurse informing me that it was positive. I (of course surprised since I was not informed of a drug test) replied that it should come as no surprise since I explicitly disclosed that information during the admission interview. “What was the big deal?” I asked. We have to report you to CPS. I was shocked! Racing thoughts of losing my baby! Here I am in active labor and could not be present in the moment due to all of these thoughts! I asked that they immediately contact my OB/Gyne and cancel the mandatory reporting since my results were consistent with my prescribed meds. It took several nurse visits to my room, including Supervisors and Doctors in charge. Finally my Dr. arrived and cancelled the request to report. I do not wish this on anyone! There has to be other ways to address these issues/concerns. I took a tylenol with codeine for severe back pain after finally giving in. I have advanced arthritis of my spine and had been having contractions for several weeks. I do not mind the testing, at all. But please consider the patient history before making any harsh judgement or irrevocable decision.

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