Update on Trial Scheme on School Drug Testing in Tai Po District

     The Trial Scheme on School Drug Testing in Tai Po District launched last December is running smoothly.

     As at today (May 25), a total of 2,139 students were randomly selected for the screening test.  Of these, 1,689 students took the test and no confirmed positive case was found.

     Among the selected students, 398 students were assessed as being not suitable for the test in view of their physical condition or having taken medications.  Forty-six students could not provide a urine specimen for the test at the relevant time.  Six students refused to take the test and the schools contacted their parents according to the protocol.

     Since the launch of the scheme, two false-positive cases were found following confirmatory testing by the Government Laboratory.  The concerned students and parents were informed immediately of the results.

     Since the announcement of the participation rate last December, 68 more students and their parents have joined the scheme, while six students and their parents withdrew from the scheme.  As at today, more than 12,400 students have joined the trial scheme.

     Students are generally positive to the scheme and co-operative.  No complaints have been received.

     The Government has commissioned a professional research organisation to undertake a comprehensive assessment of the design, implementation and effectiveness of the scheme, study other local and overseas experiences in school drug testing, and suggest appropriate refinements and revisions to the scheme.  The study is expected to be completed in the third quarter of this year.  The Government will consider research recommendations and then decide on the way forward.

Ends/Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Issued at HKT 20:53