ACTON, Mass., Oct. 31, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Psychemedics Corporation (NASDAQ:PMD) today issued a response to a Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling in the case of Boston Police Department v. The Massachusetts Civil Service Commission, which dealt with the Boston Police Department’s 2012 decision not to hire an applicant after the applicant failed a Psychemedics Hair Test.  Previously, a Massachusetts Superior Court Judge had found that the Boston Police Department’s reliance on the test was proper.

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court overturned the Superior Court’s decision, citing as one of its grounds the applicant’s “ardent” denials of drug use during his testimony before the Massachusetts Civil Service Commission (CSC), but also acknowledging that it could not consider “facts and studies” that the Court found were not before the CSC.  In a 31-page dissenting opinion, however, Supreme Court Justice Kafker disagreed, citing several studies which have “established the high degree of reliability of the testing procedures at issue.”  The Court took no position on the degree of accuracy of the Psychemedics Hair Test.

“We respectfully but strongly disagree with this result, particularly as it involves a critical public safety issue,” said Raymond Kubacki, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at Psychemedics.  “The people of Boston deserve now more than ever to have armed police officers who are not under the influence of drugs.  As recognized by Justice Kafker, the Court and the CSC relied on outdated and flawed studies that did not employ the multitude of protections that Psychemedics has used on every single one of its tests for the past 30 years and did not have the benefit of the most recent studies that have demonstrated the effectiveness of these protections.  As just one example, as recently as 2014, the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) has unequivocally stated that these protections protect police officers by effectively eliminating false-positive results.”

Psychemedics is the only hair testing company with an extensive hair sample wash protocol that has been validated by the FBI in a peer-reviewed, published study and found to eliminate the risks of false positives caused by external contamination. In this study published in 2014, the FBI concluded that “law enforcement officers handling drug evidence…will no longer be at risk of being identified as [Cocaine] user[s]” because the procedures “exclude false-positive results from environmental contact.”  Justice Kafker considered this and another Justice Department-sponsored study when he noted that “the Psychemedics phosphate-washing procedures and wash criterion eliminated 100% of false-positive calls.” 

Raymond Kubacki continued, “We have never been a party in this case and believe both the CSC and the Court would have arrived at a different decision if, as Justice Kafker did, they had been able to consider these additional studies validating the effectiveness of our wash procedure in eliminating false-positive results.  For the past thirty years, Psychemedics has had a legal track record of success in courts across the country.

“For our company, nothing is more important than knowing when we get a positive result on a test, it is accurate, reliable and above all fair to the individual being tested. No company invests the resources we do to ensure that positive results on a test indicate drug use rather than drug exposure. It is why our results have been trusted by thousands of clients in millions of tests over the past thirty years.”

The Psychemedics Hair Test for Cocaine and other drug classes have been awarded Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 510(k) clearance and has a validated reputation for reliability and defensibility of results. Psychemedics' lab is a College of American Pathologists (CAP) and ISO-IEC 17025:2005 certified laboratory.

About Psychemedics Corporation

Psychemedics Corporation is the world’s largest provider of hair testing for drugs of abuse and has been successfully operating for over 30 years. Thousands of corporations rely on the patented Psychemedics drug testing services. Psychemedics’ clients include more than 10 percent of the Fortune 500, some of the largest police departments in America, Federal Reserve Banks, and schools.

For more information, visit the Psychemedics Corporation website at www.psychemedics.com.

Raymond C. Kubacki
Chairman, President and CEO
(978) 206-8220
Rayk@psychemedics.com