The IAAF has recently held a successful one day “Anti-Doping Delegates Workshop” in Paris (6 May) aimed at continuing to improve the already high standard of doping controls conducted during its competitions
Working in conjunction with the European Athletics Association (EAA), the IAAF invited Anti-Doping Delegates (ADD’s) from the IAAF and EAA along with a number of Meeting Organisers to discuss a large number of issues related to the practical implementation of doping control at competition venues. Also present at the workshop were medical and anti-doping representatives from a small number of other International Federations such as Rowing, Cycling and Gymnastics who brought with them valuable knowledge from their respective sports.
An IAAF ADD is the official with overall responsibility for ensuring that doping control procedures at a competition are conducted properly and are in line with the IAAF Rules and Guidelines. The Delegates work in close contact with the Local Organising Committees, doping control staff, or relevant Anti-Doping Authorities to ensure that all preparations and arrangements are in place for a successful doping control programme.
In general the Local Organising Committee or Anti-Doping Authority will be responsible for the collection of doping controls during competition, however the IAAF ADD still has many roles to perform in overseeing this process. These include actions such as ensuring adequate preparation by the LOC, pre-event briefing of doping control personnel, selection of athletes to be tested, overseeing the sample collection process and doping control station, resolution of any issues which occur in the field, and sending a final report to the IAAF detailing the doping control process and any difficulties or issues which were encountered.
IAAF Delegates may also travel to countries or competitions which are less experienced with the doping control procedures and in this way can oversee, assist and educate the organisers on the best procedures and methods for implementing doping control tests during their competitions.
Participants at the May 2006 workshop discussed various issues such as pre-event preparation for doping control, training of doping control staff, blood collection issues, appropriate doping control stations and many more. Delegates also ran through and discussed specific scenarios with which they might be faced at an event, or which in the past have caused difficulties in doping control.
Dr Juan Manuel Alonso, Chairman of the IAAF’s Medical and Anti-Doping Commission was present at the workshop and praised the enthusiasm of the Delegates and Meeting Organisers who attended.
“We are conscious of the need for all doping control to be conducted in an appropriate and professional manner and always within the scope of our Rules. Most importantly we must ensure that our athletes have complete confidence in the process and that we do all we can to make it a hassle free experience. After all, it is for the benefit our clean athletes that we place so much emphasis on these doping controls”.
“I am pleased that the IAAF can continue to finance events such as this workshop, and that we have Delegates of the highest quality who are experienced, knowledgeable, and committed to ensuring the success of the IAAF anti-doping programme”, said Dr Alonso
As in previous years, the EAA and IAAF Delegates will be present at a large number of events during the 2006 summer season. These will include the IAAF World Athletics Series and many other World Athletics Tour events. Their work may be done in the background and out of the public’s attention, however their role is of vital importance in helping to ensure the success and credibility of the IAAF in-competition testing programme.