Australian Government: Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority

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Testing

ASADA Testing Guide

Learn what will happen during and after a testing session.

Scroll down on each step for further information.

1. Athlete selection

A Doping Control Officer randomly selects an athlete

You can be selected for testing anywhere, any time, and are subject to both random and targeted selection methods.


 

The role of the ASADA Doping Control Officers (DCO) is to organise and manage the sample collection session, ensuring that all procedures are followed. The role of the Chaperone is to notify, accompany, and witness you providing a sample.

DCOs and Chaperones do not determine the doping control program, and they don’t control who is selected for testing, or how selections are made. Their role is to ensure that sample collection occurs in strict accordance with the relevant procedures, in a fair, equitable manner free from prejudice.

2. Notification

Athlete being notified by Chaperone

The DCO or Chaperone will notify you for sample collection generally in person, or less frequently by telephone, written notice, or by a third party.

Once notified of selection for testing, you must remain in direct observation of the DCO or chaperone until the DCO is satisfied that the sample collection procedure is complete.

Any attempt to evade notification may result in an anti‑doping rule violation.

Third party notifications

We recommend that a third party (for example, guardian or coach) is also notified of athlete selection for sample collection when an athlete is under the age of 18 or has difficulty communicating verbally in English.

In the case of an athlete with an intellectual disability, it is a NAD Scheme requirement that a third party is notified.

If the third party attempts to hinder the notification process this may be considered to be an antidoping rule violation, and may result in a sanction for the third party.

3. Reporting to the doping control station

For no-advance-notice testing, including in-competition testing, you are required to report to the doping control station immediately unless you request a delay in reporting for valid reasons. These are listed under Athlete Rights

You can ask the DCO for information on the sample collection process.

4. Selecting a collection vessel

Athlete selecting a container

You will be given a choice of individually sealed collection vessels, and you will select one. You will verify that the equipment is intact and has not been tampered with, and you will maintain control of the collection vessel at all times.

5. Providing the sample

Urine sample provision

Chaperone of same gender directly witnessing urine sample

Only a Chaperone (or DCO) of the same gender is permitted in the area of privacy when you provide the sample. The Chaperone (or DCO) will directly witness the urine sample leaving your body and going into the collection vessel.

You are required to thoroughly wash and dry your hands before providing a urine sample. You are also required to remove any clothing from the knees to the mid-torso and from the hands to the elbows.

You are responsible for controlling your sample and keeping it in view of the DCO or Chaperone until it is sealed in a sample collection kit.

If you provide a sample less than the required volume, you are required to temporarily seal it and provide further volume.

The first urine sample(s) that you are able to provide post notification must be collected.

Blood sample provision

Athlete providing blood sample

You will be asked to select blood collection equipment and check that it is intact and has not been tampered with. During a ten minute resting period, you may be asked to complete a short questionnaire. A blood collection official will collect the sample in the presence of a DCO, chaperone, and if applicable, the athlete’s representative. If you are tested under Athlete Biological Passport conditions you will be required to wait 2 hours after training or competition before the blood is drawn.

If you have provided a blood sample, ASADA advises you do not do any strenuous exercise using that arm for a minimum of 30 minutes, to minimise bruising at the puncture site.

Athletes with disabilities

If you have a disability, you have the right to request a modification to the process; however, the DCO must approve it. Where required, ASADA will provide you with assistance during the sample collection procedure, and modify the procedures.

If you use a leg bag you will be required to drain any urine from the leg bag prior to the witnessed sample provision. If possible, you are required to use a clean, sterile catheter. If you choose to use a non-sterile catheter, you do so at your own risk.

Athlete representative

If you are under 18 years of age, you are encouraged to have a representative present while you are providing a urine sample. The representative will not directly witness you providing the sample unless you specifically request them to do so. If you have a disability and require a representative, they will not directly witness you providing the sample unless you require their assistance to provide a sample.

6. Selection of the sample collection kit

Athlete selecting a sealed sample collection kit

You will select an individually sealed sample collection kit that is intact and has not been tampered with.

You will open the kit and confirm that the sample code numbers on the bottles (or tubes for blood collection), the lids, and the containers all match. All sample collection kit numbers will be recorded on the Doping Control Test Form.

7. Splitting and sealing the sample

Urine

You will pour a measured amount of the urine into each of the ‘A’ and ‘B’ labelled bottles, and then secure the kits. You will be asked to leave a small amount of urine in the collection vessel so the DCO can measure the specific gravity.

Then you will seal both the ‘A’ and ‘B’ bottles. The DCO will verify that the bottles are sealed properly.

Blood

You will place and secure the blood samples in the relevant labelled containers and secure the kits.

8. Measuring the specific gravity

DCO checking the specific gravity of urine sample

The DCO will check the specific gravity of the residual urine left in the collection vessel, and will record the value on the Doping Control Test Form. You should avoid over hydrating; this can happen if you drink too much fluid. If your sample is too diluted and does not meet the required specific gravity you will be required to provide additional urine samples until you provide a sample that meets the specific gravity requirements.

9. Final paperwork

Your personal information is recorded on the Doping Control Test Form, including contact details.

Athlete providing information on substances

You will be asked to provide information on prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, herbal products, food supplements, and any other substances you have used within the last seven (7) days. These are recorded on the Doping Control Test Form.

Under the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions, there are no longer substances or methods on the Prohibited List that require a Declaration of Use.

Consider declaring any substance used in the last seven days. Not declaring use may affect results management, particularly in an application for a retrospective Therapeutic Use Exemption.

You will be invited to note comments and concerns about how the session was conducted on the form.

At the conclusion of the session, you must check that all the information recorded is correct, and sign the Doping Control Test Form. The form must also be signed by the parties present, including the DCO and Chaperone and, if applicable, the athlete representative and blood collection official. The DCO will provide a copy of the Doping Control Test Form to you for your records.

The copy of the Doping Control Test Form that the laboratory receives does not contain any information that could identify you.

10. Securing and transporting the sample

Sample(s) being secured for transport

The secure sample(s) and the laboratory copy of the Doping Control Test Form are sent to the laboratory for analysis. There is a strict chain of custody regarding transportation, storage and opening of the sample.

The laboratory will inspect the samples upon arrival to ensure there is no evidence of tampering.

All urine samples will be sent to a WADA-accredited laboratory for analysis. Blood samples may at times be sent to an alternate laboratory.

The analytical procedure

The laboratory will analyse the ‘A’ sample (urine) or blood sample for the presence of substances on the WADA Prohibited List.

ASADA can store samples in its deep freeze facility, called the Tank, for up to eight years, and retrospectively analyse the samples to detect prohibited substances and methods, and enforce sanctions against athletes.

Read about the Results Management procedures.