Today, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) publishes the 2020 List of Prohibited Substances and Methods (List); the 2020 Summary of Major Modifications and Explanatory Notes; and the 2020 Monitoring Program. The List, which was approved by WADA’s Executive Committee (ExCo) on 23 September 2019, comes into force on 1 January 2020.
The List, which is one of six International Standards that are mandatory for all Signatories of the World Anti-Doping Code (Code), designates what substances and methods are prohibited both in- and out-of-competition, and which substances are banned in particular sports.
WADA Director General Olivier Niggli said: “WADA is pleased to announce the publication of the 2020 Prohibited List. Updated annually, the List undergoes an extensive consultation period with a wide array of anti-doping stakeholders from around the globe. This is a very comprehensive process which aims to ensure that new substances and methods with doping potential – which are either currently on the market or in some cases still in clinical development – are included in the List. This helps us to protect not only the integrity of sport, but the health of athletes worldwide.”
The List is released three months ahead of it taking effect so that athletes and their entourage can acquaint themselves with any modifications. Ultimately, athletes are responsible for prohibited substances found in their body and prohibited methods found to have been used. Athlete entourage are also liable for Anti-Doping Rule Violations if determined to be complicit. Consequently, if there is any doubt as to the status of a substance or method, it is important that they contact their respective Anti-Doping Organization (International Federation or National Anti-Doping Organization) for advice.
The List’s annual revision process is led by WADA, beginning with an initial meeting in January and concluding with the publication of the List by 1 October. This is an extensive consultation process that includes WADA’s List Expert Group – composed of some of the most highly qualified experts in the world – gathering information, including the latest scientific and medical research, trends, and intelligence gathered from law enforcement and pharmaceutical companies; circulating a draft List among stakeholders; taking their submissions into consideration; and revising the draft, followed by review by the Agency’s Health, Medical and Research (HMR) Committee. The HMR Committee then makes its recommendation to the WADA ExCo, which approves the List during its September meeting.
For a substance or method to be added to the List, it must be determined that it meets at least two of the following three criteria:
- It has the potential to enhance or enhances sport performance
- It represents an actual or potential health risk to the athletes
- 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.
Languages and Formats
Stakeholders wishing to translate the List into other languages are kindly asked to signal their interest at email@example.com, by 31 October 2019. If interested, WADA would provide the necessary files and, once the translation is finalized, would make the List available on the Agency’s website.
The List’s mobile-friendly digital edition will go live on 1 January 2020.