A recent survey conducted by Versapak Doping Control found that security is the number one consideration for doping control equipment. 63% of all respondents said that security was an ‘essential’ factor in doping control equipment, 27% said it was ‘very important’ and less than 1% said it was just ‘important’. Interestingly, 100% of the WADA-accredited laboratories who responded to the survey said that security was ‘essential’ when choosing doping control equipment.
The survey, which was completed by National Anti-Doping Agencies, Regional Anti-Doping Agencies, WADA laboratories as well as national and international sporting federations, revealed that the reliability of the equipment was the second most ‘essential’ factor followed by the equipment being uniquely numbered.
The security of the athlete’s sample between the point of collection and arrival at the laboratory is essential for many reasons. The athlete needs to have confidence in the system and that their urine or blood sample will arrive at the laboratory without any chance of a third party interfering with the sample. Those responsible for analysing the sample need to be sure that the results they find are genuinely attributable to the athlete – whether that result is positive or negative. Knowing that the sample has been completely contained within a robust tamper evident container signifies to the laboratory technician responsible for opening the sample that, as long as no visible evidence of tampering exists, they can trust the authenticity of the sample.