Since the last communication from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to the Anti-Doping Organizations (ADO) on the question of controls, the March 6, the SARS-Cov-2 (COVID-19) pandemic has continued to evolve into an even greater health and societal emergency that requires effective action by everyone around the world to minimize the likelihood of transmission and the impact on society.
WADA is monitoring the situation based on information from experts from theWorld Health Organization and other reliable sources. Most countries have strict measures in place, which include closing borders, quarantine / self-isolation, cancellation of flights, restrictions on social movements, etc. As a result, many sporting events have been canceled or postponed. This forced WADA and its partners to adapt their daily activities by introducing measures such as teleworking and, in the case of many ADOs, reducing part of their programs (including checks and other activities).
Since the beginning of this crisis, the Agency has called on all ADOs to follow the advice of local health authorities in order to ensure the protection of athletes and doping control personnel, while protecting the integrity of the programs. control, especially in the run-up to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
This goal remains the same, and WADA's vision of a world where all athletes can compete in a doping-free environment remains unchanged. However, we all agree that the protection of public health must come first. We must therefore put in place more stringent measures as an anti-doping community.
In the wake of government measures that have been and are being put in place around the world, WADA has evaluated the World Anti-Doping Program in collaboration with ADOs, including National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs), International Federations (IFs) , Major Event Organizations (GMOs) and other organizations such as the International Testing Agency (ICA) - which leads the Tokyo 2020 Pre-Olympic Anti-Doping Working Group on behalf of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) - and accredited laboratories, in order to determine how the anti-doping community can best function in this difficult environment.
We are grateful to the ADOs who explained to us how they are affected and what measures they are putting in place. Given the differences in each country, it is difficult to establish a single set of recommendations or guidelines. However, based on the information and experience gained to date, WADA recommends that ADOs consider the following guidelines regarding key elements of the World Anti-Doping Program.
It is important to remember that first and foremost, ADOs must follow the recommendations (or requirements) of their national government and health authorities for all activities. If this information is not available, then ADOs can approach their government authorities for advice. Although ADOs may adapt their activities to reflect COVID-19, athletes remain subject to all provisions of the World Anti-Doping Code and must comply with them accordingly.
Our top priority remains the same: ensuring the health and safety of athletes and all those affected by the activities of our community. To do this, and to protect the integrity of the global anti-doping system, we must strive to take a consistent system-wide approach that demonstrates community solidarity and aims to give athletes confidence that they will stay. at the heart of our mission.
As a result, WADA encourages an open and continuous dialogue among all partners so that we can continue to monitor and adapt to the situation. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your respective WADA contact in Montreal or one of the Agency's regional offices. The Agency is committed to providing support and communicating as it should as we, the clean sport community, navigate these difficult times together.
Sincerely yours and stay healthy,
World Anti-Doping Agency