14 November 2016, Montreal: The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has suspended the accreditation of the Doping Analysis Laboratory in Doha, Qatar for a period of four months.
The suspension, which took effect on 7 November 2016, prohibits the Laboratory from carrying out any anti-doping activities including all analyses of urine and blood samples. During the period of suspension, samples are required to be transported securely to another WADA-accredited laboratory, ensuring that athletes can have full confidence in continued high quality sample analysis and the wider anti-doping system. The decision to suspend the laboratory is a direct result of the more stringent quality assessment procedures enacted by WADA to ensure laboratories maintain the highest standards.
Pursuant to Article 13.7 of the World Anti-Doping Code (Code), the Laboratory may appeal this decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport within 21 days of receipt of notice.
During the period of suspension, the laboratory shall address all non-conformities identified by the Laboratory Expert Group or WADA in any request for corrective action or otherwise, as well as any additional non-conformities identified during any WADA site visit during the suspension period. If the laboratory satisfies the Disciplinary Committee in meeting these requirements, it may apply for reinstatement prior to the expiry of the four month suspension period. Should the laboratory not address the non-conformities by the end of the four-month suspension period, WADA may extend the suspension of the laboratory’s accreditation for an additional six months.
According to the International Standard for Laboratories (ISL), WADA is responsible for accrediting and re-accrediting anti-doping laboratories, thereby ensuring that they maintain the highest quality standards. This monitoring process is conducted in conjunction with ISO assessment by independent national accreditation bodies that are full members of the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC).
Whenever a laboratory does not meet ISL requirements, WADA may suspend the laboratory’s accreditation (see decision below).
Decision of the Chairman of the WADA Executive Committee:
- That the WADA accreditation of the Laboratory be suspended for a period of four months;
- That the suspension be effective immediately and be notified to all relevant national public authorities, national accreditation bodies, national anti-doping organizations, national Olympic committees, international federations and the International Olympic Committee, as stipulated in the ISL;
- That all samples not yet analyzed and all samples currently undergoing “A” or “B” confirmation procedures and all samples where a presumptive analytical finding has been reported as of the date of this decision shall be securely transported with a demonstrable chain of custody to another WADA-accredited laboratory as soon as possible and no later than 14 calendar days following the date of this decision;
- That during the period of the suspension, WADA shall conduct a site visit at the Laboratory’s expense, on a date to be determined by WADA taking into account the time required by the Laboratory to address the non-conformities identified in this recommendation or otherwise identified by the LabEG.
- That during the period of the suspension, the Laboratory shall address all non-conformities identified by the LabEG or WADA in any request for corrective action or otherwise, as well as any additional non-conformities identified during any WADA site visit during the suspension period;
- That, should any identified non-conformities not be satisfactorily resolved by the Laboratory by the end of the suspension period, WADA may extend the suspension of the Laboratory’s WADA accreditation for an additional period of up to six months in accordance with Article 126.96.36.199.1, para.4 of the ISL; and
- That upon satisfactory completion of item 5, the Laboratory may apply to the Chair of the WADA Executive Committee for reinstatement prior to the expiry of the four month suspension period.
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