November 24, 2016
Bookmark and Share

WADA Suspends the Accreditation of the Mexico City Laboratory

Montreal, 24 November 2016 -  The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has suspended the accreditation of the Laboratorio Nacional de Prevencion y Control del Dopaje-CONADE (the “Laboratory”) in Mexico City, Mexico for a period of up to 6 months.

The suspension, which took effect on 23 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 WADA’s laboratory site visit. The Laboratory Expert Group should decide whether the Laboratory should be required to review any test results it previously reported and/or re-analyze any samples with respect to which it previously reported an Adverse Analytical Finding. If the laboratory satisfies WADA in meeting these requirements, it may apply for reinstatement prior to the expiry of the six-month suspension period. Should the laboratory not address the non-conformities by the end of the six-month suspension period, WADA may extend the suspension of the laboratory’s accreditation for an additional period of up to 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:

1. The WADA accreditation of the Mexico City Laboratory shall be suspended for a period of up to 6 months or until such time that any outstanding non-conformities are satisfactorily addressed.

2. The suspension shall be effective immediately and be notified to all stakeholders by announcement on the WADA website, in accordance with ISL Art 4.4.14.3.

3. All samples not yet analysed 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.

4. The suspension period is intended to provide an opportunity for the Mexico City Laboratory to focus all its efforts into concrete improvements to its operations with the objective of ensuring future compliance.

5. A laboratory site visit and satisfactory analysis of EQAS samples shall also be conducted at the Laboratory's expense during the period of suspension, at a date to be determined by WADA, taking into account the time required by the Mexico City Laboratory to address the non-conformities identified in this recommendation or otherwise identified by the Laboratory Expert Group (LabEG).

6. 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 the above WADA site visit. The LabEG should decide whether the Mexico City Laboratory should be required to review any test results it previously reported and/or re-analyze any samples with respect to which it previously reported an Adverse Analytical Finding.

7. The Laboratory may apply to the Chair of the WADA Executive Committee for reinstatement of its WADA accreditation prior to the expiry of the six month suspension period if it has satisfactorily completed item 6. In support of that application, the Laboratory shall provide documentation sufficient to demonstrate that all remedial and preventive actions required by WADA have been implemented in full, such that the Chair of the WADA Executive Committee can be confident in the accuracy and reliability of the doping control sample testing conducted by the Mexico City Laboratory moving forward.

8. Should any identified non-conformities not be satisfactorily resolved by the Mexico City 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 ISL Art 4.4.13.2.1.

                                                                              – ENDS –