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To keep up with the ever-evolving world of cheating, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) executive committee published a new list of prohibited substances during a meeting in September.

A major change in the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) list of prohibited substances and methods has been updated. The 2020 List of Prohibited Substances and Methods (List) was published on September 30, 2019, entered force on January 1 and now a revised edition is published as of October 1.

An eye-opener is about Article 4.2.3. Added to the code is heroin, cocaine, MDMA or ecstasy, and THC. Recreational drugs can sometimes act as the thin edge of the wedge. A propensity to recreate makes it a small leap to cheat in sport. Often dealers of performance-enhancing drugs will also sell recreational products.

There is a recreational caveat that will allow use with a smaller suspension of three months should the athlete prove that the use out-of-competition and unrelated to sport performance. And reduced to one month if the athlete completes a drug rehabilitation program.

WADA also highlighted a change to Prohibited Method M2.2, which is related to manipulation of the chemical and physical make-up of the substance.

Intravenous infusions or injections of more than a total of 100ml per 12-hour period, except when used during medical treatment at a medical facility, during surgery or clinical diagnostic investigations, have now been classified as specified.

WADA states that “for a substance or method to be added to the List, it must be determined that it meets two of the following three criteria:

  1. It has the potential to enhance or enhances sport performance
  2. It represents an actual or potential health risk to the athletes
  3. It violates the spirit of sport

It should be noted that for athletes who have a legitimate medical reason for using a prohibited substance or method that is on the List, they may be accommodated if they meet the criteria outlined in the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions (ISTUE). The TUE process has overwhelming acceptance from athletes, physicians and anti-doping stakeholders worldwide.”