USADA is a fully compliant signatory to the World Anti-Doping Code and WADA international standards, considered the foundation of the strongest anti-doping programs globally.

What is the Code?

The Code is a core document that provides the framework for anti-doping policies, rules, and regulations within sport organizations and among public authorities. It is designed to harmonize anti-doping policies and ensure the standards are the same for all athletes. The Code works in conjunction with five international standards that further provide guidelines for anti-doping efforts.

What are the five international standards?

The Prohibited List

The prohibited list outlines the substances and methods prohibited in sport.

International Standard for Testing & Investigations

Testing is an extremely crucial piece of any anti-doping program. The purpose of the International Standard for Testing & Investigations (ISTI) is to plan for effective testing and to maintain the integrity and identity of samples, from notifying the athlete to transporting samples for analysis.

International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions

The purpose of the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions (ISTUE) is to harmonize the process of granting TUEs across sports and countries. The WADA TUE process ensures athletes can get access to important medication when appropriate while ensuring clean athletes a level playing field.

International Standard for Laboratories

The purpose of the International Standard for Laboratories (ISL) is to ensure production of valid test results and evidentiary data and to achieve uniform and harmonized results and reporting from all accredited laboratories. Anti-doping and other sport organizations which are signatories to the Code agree to have all samples analyzed at WADA accredited labs.

International for Protection of Privacy and Personal Information

The purpose of the International Standard for the Protection of Privacy and Personal Information (ISPPPI) is to ensure that all relevant parties involved in anti-doping in sport adhere to a set of minimum privacy protections when collecting and using athlete personal information, such as information relating to whereabouts, doping controls, and Therapeutic Use Exemptions.

What is a World Anti-Doping Code signatory?

The term “World Anti-Doping Code signatory” refers to an organization that has fully accepted the Code and accompanying International Standards. All Code signatories are listed on WADA’s website here.

Code acceptance means that a sport organization agrees to the principles of the Code and agrees to implement and comply with the Code.

Once a sport organization accepts the Code, it then needs to implement it. Code implementation means that a sport organization amends its rules and policies to include the mandatory articles and principles of the Code.

Finally, enforcement refers to the sport organization actually enforcing its amended rules and policies in accordance with the Code.

WADA monitors implementation of and compliance with the Code.

When did USADA adopt the World Anti-Doping Code?

The World Anti-Doping Agency announced USADA as one of the first organizations to formally adopt the World Anti-Doping Code on April 7, 2003.

How many World Anti-Doping Code signatories are there?

To date, more than 630 sport organizations, including the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), all Olympic Sport International Federations (IFs) and all IOC-recognized IFs,  National Olympic and Paralympic Committees, National Anti-Doping Organizations, and many other sport organizations have accepted the World Anti-Doping Code.

In the United States, major professional sport leagues are not signatories to the World Anti-Doping Code.

World Anti-Doping Code Effective January 1, 2015

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency is a signatory to the World Anti-Doping Code, which, along with the Prohibited List and the International Standards, are created and maintained by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) in order to harmonize anti-doping efforts around the world across all sports. The international anti-doping community, including WADA and all of the Code-Signatories, have completed a full review and revision of the 2009 World Anti-Doping Code; and as a result of this review and revision, on January 1, 2015, a new World Anti-Doping Code took effect. The 2015 Code is designed to even better protect the rights of clean athletes and the integrity of competition with a focus on targeting current issues in the fight against doping, while simultaneously being tougher for those who intentionally cheat and easier for those who follow the rules and compete clean. USADA was an active participant in the Code review, submitting comments and feedback, and sharing our expertise and experience throughout the process. Learn more about the 2015 Code changes.

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