Athletes Urged to Exercise High Degree of Care with Regards to Medication Use

(Ottawa, Ontario – October 3, 2019) – The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) reminds athletes, support personnel and the sport community that it is imperative to determine whether a medication is on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List prior to use.

Athletes have a personal responsibility to evaluate every medication they consume to ensure it won’t result in a positive test. This year alone, the CCES has seen cases where the source of a banned substance in an athlete’s sample was determined to be a medication taken in error.

Unfortunately, ignorance and complacency are not legitimate reasons to use a prohibited substance. Under the rule of strict liability, athletes are responsible for any prohibited substances found in their sample.

Athletes should keep these actions top of mind to minimize the risk of an unintentional anti-doping rule violation: 

  • Before using a prescription or over-the-counter medication, search Global DRO to determine whether it is prohibited in sport.
  • If you have a prescription for a prohibited medication, use the Medical Exemption Wizard to determine whether an exemption is necessary. 
  • When you consult a medical professional, make sure they know that you are subject to anti-doping rules, and ensure they are familiar with the Prohibited List.   
  • Don’t use another person’s medication. If you need to use someone’s medication in an emergency, use the Medical Exemption Wizard to determine whether to apply for a medical exemption after the fact.
  • Don’t share or borrow medications. Maintain a personal supply of commonly used medications.
  • When travelling outside Canada, renew prescriptions prior to departure and bring a supply of commonly used over-the-counter medications.

WADA maintains the Prohibited List, an international standard identifying which substances and methods are prohibited in sport. The List is updated every January 1.

Athletes who require a medication that is on the Prohibited List can apply for a Medical Exemption to provide authorization to take the medication.

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About the CCES

The CCES is an independent, national, not-for profit organization with a responsibility to administer the Canadian Anti-Doping Program. We recognize that true sport can make a great difference for individuals, communities and our country. The CCES acknowledges funding, in part, from the Government of Canada. We are committed to making sport better by working collaboratively to activate a values-based and principle-driven sport system; protecting the integrity of sport from the negative forces of doping and other unethical threats; and advocating for sport that is fair, safe and open to everyone.

For further information, please contact:

Megan Cumming
Corporate Communications Manager
+1 613-521-3340 x3233
mcumming@cces.ca