I'm telling you, this is a basic invasion of privacy.
Codeine is not a substance that in anyway poses a danger to aviation. I would feel far more comfortable having a 747 captain with an extremely bad migrane taking codeine and continuing working than I would if he took nothing. Why? Because he will be able to concentrate clearly and far more effectively after the codeine takes effect, and he's far more likely to crash if he can't think straight due to a throbbing migraine, or even an extremely bad tooth ache for that matter.
The substance in question is a mild opioid, and after doing some research it requires prescription in all of the united states to use. This drug is freely availble throughout the EU, in New Zealand, Australia, and much of asia and doesn't pose any problem. The most servere side effect is that it may lead to constipation.... so drink plenty of water (which should also assist in a drug test anyway). The substance does not lead to any substancial amount of sleepiness unless mixed with alcohol, in which case the opioids cause the effect of the alcohol
to intensify. So the real danger here is Alcohol, which is of course, readily available and wouldn't show up in the standard urine drug test.
Making suggestions about misloading far fetched. Really this is just part of an old outdated knee-jerk reaction old politicians in America keep pushing. I feel it is out of touch with most of America, and falls into the same category as the 21 year old drinking age limit. The problem here is the drug is "an opioid" and as it is derived from this, ignorant people here the word "Opioid" and think "Opium" and images of 19th C Shanghai come to their minds. Purely a knee jerk reaction that has no basis in scientific fact.
I can understand the arguement for legal reasons...but if the government got the law right, this wouldn't have been a problem. This poor guy basically has lost his chance to work at BA
basically because some old men in Congress are "getting tough on drugs" but don't have a bloody clue what they're talking about. Maybe somebody should inform them that pseudoephrine (Sudafed) is available in supermarkets in California and even Utah, and I can just walk in there and buy a truckload of the stuff...stuff with some basic knoweldge of chemistry i can turn into Speed in my kitchen.
You guys need to actually all stand up and say something because this situation with regard to all of this isn't effective.... and while you're at it the Alcohol situation (because every exchange student i know between 18-20 never fly's on an american company for long haul because they cant even have a beer...also think of th tourist dollars).
Finally, 744, im urging you to go and try and find a sympathetic doctor. Just as BA
probably want to cover their ass for legal reasons, a medical certificate of some description or a doctor's letter would get them off the hook. You may be lucky and get a british person who is used to seeing the substance (and thus realises your not an opium addict) examin your case...and don't forget, BA
is run by an Australian these days.... and its not in Australian culture to make a big deal about something like that.