Biological Monitoring

Spoiled Screens

Approved: February 11, 2008
Revised: June, 2014

A spoiled screen is a collected specimen that is considered invalid after receipt by the University of Alberta “Toxicology Lab” for one or more of the following reasons:

  1. Requisition is missing or does not have all the information required.
    – Donor’s ID number, date of collection, time of collection, collection location code, collector’s initials, temperature, donor’s declared medications.
  2. Vial label is missing or does not have all the information required.
    – Donors ID number, date of collection, time of collection
  3. Confidential security seal is missing or does not have all the information required.
    – Date and donors ID number.
  4. Vial has not been secured and has leaked in transit.
  5. The specimen has been in transit between the collection location and the toxicology lab for more than seven (7) days.

Notification of rejection of a specimen by Toxicology will be forwarded within six hours to the PHMC through the Drug Testing Review Consultant and Physician Health Program Coordinator.

Further actions will then be taken by the Physician Health Program Coordinator dependent upon the donor, collection locations, staff involved and/or other circumstances involving the particular specimen and its donor.

These actions may include but not be limited to:

  • Contact of donor for collection of another specimen.
  • Contact of collection site to attempt to ascertain the reason for rejection, and to ensure protocol is understood by their collectors.
  • Ensure reminders are given to all program participants to accept responsibility of ensuring their specimen collection paperwork is completed in an acceptable manner.
  • Other actions as deemed appropriate.

Written documentation explaining the spoiled screen and results of the investigation will be entered into the participant’s file at the Physician Health Program Coordinator’s office.


Dr. Jeremy Beach, Assistant Registrar
780-969-4940 or 1-800-561-3899 ext. 4940 (in Canada)

Leanne Minckler, Physician Health Advisor
780-969-4943 or 1-800-561-3899 ext. 4943 (in Canada)