Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 – Anti-Doping Information

The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) is committed to providing Team Canada athletes with the anti-doping information they need for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games (the Games) in PyeongChang. The following is a reminder about the anti-doping rules and responsibilities that apply to Team Canada athletes at all times and specific information for these Games.

Anti-Doping Rules

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) Anti-Doping Rules will be in force for the Games. The Games period begins on February 1, 2018 (the opening of the Athletes Village) and ends on February 25, 2018 (the closing ceremonies). During that time, athletes may be subject to testing by the IOC. As always, athletes may be notified of their selection for doping control at any time and in any place in the world, with no advance notice.

World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List

The World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) 2018 Prohibited List is now public and will come into effect on January 1, 2018. All samples collected by the CCES, International Federations and the IOC as of January 1, 2018 will be tested for the substances and methods identified in the 2018 Prohibited List.

According to the IOC Anti-Doping Rules, samples collected in the 12 hours prior to competition through to the end of a competition will be analyzed for all substances and methods on the 2018 WADA Prohibited List. A competition is equal to a single race, match or game.

Samples collected outside of an athlete’s competition period will be analyzed for those substances and methods that are prohibited out of competition only.

Doping Control Procedures During the Games

During the Games, and consistent with the athlete rights and responsibilities under the Canadian Anti-Doping Program, Team Canada athletes are:

  • Encouraged to bring someone with them to doping control to act as their representative and to assist with translation or interpretation as needed,
  • Record their concerns regarding the doping control process in a Supplementary Report (if available) or on the Doping Control Form in the “Comments” area,
  • Reminded that once notified for doping control, they must report to the doping control station immediately unless they request a delay for a valid reason and it is approved by the PyeongChang 2018 Anti-Doping Team.

Valid reasons for requesting a delay in reporting to doping control include:

  • Performing a warm-down,
  • Obtaining medical treatment,
  • Fulfilling media commitments,
  • Completing a training session, or
  • Participating in a medal ceremony.

If an athlete is granted a delay in reporting to the doping control station, or a leave from the doping control station, they will be accompanied by a chaperone.

Visit the CCES website for additional anti-doping information including sample collection procedures and athlete rights and responsibilities.


In order to protect clean athletes and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the fight against doping, the IOC will be collecting Whereabouts information.

The IOC Anti-Doping Rules requires that Team Canada athletes who are included in the CCES Registered Testing Pool (RTP) or their International Federation’s (IF) RTP to continue to update their whereabouts in ADAMS during the Games.

Games-time whereabouts information must include:

  • 60-minute time slot and location for testing,
  • Accommodation details (including building and room number in the Village),
  • Competition schedule, and
  • Training locations and times.

Athletes may appoint a team leader, agent, coach or other who may submit whereabouts information on their behalf, but they remain responsible for the accuracy of their information.

Team Canada athletes in the CCES National Athlete Pool (NAP) and RTP must keep their team leader informed of the following information during the Games:

  • Accommodation details (including room number in the Village),
  • Competition schedule, and
  • Training locations and times.


As of January 1, 2018, athletes requiring the use of prescription and/or over-the-counter medications must verify the status of all of their medications to determine whether or not they appear on WADA’s 2018 Prohibited List.

While in Canada, Team Canada athletes can check their medications by:

  • Using the GlobalDRO,
  • Emailing substances@cces.ca
  • Calling the CCES at 1-800-672-7775 (toll free), and
  • Contacting their team physician or the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) physician assigned to their sport.

During the Games, athletes must consult with a COC team physician regarding their medications.

Therapeutic Use Exemptions

According to the IOC Anti-Doping Rules, Team Canada athletes who are taking a prohibited substance(s) for medically-justified reasons must have a valid Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) in ADAMS prior to the Games.

The IOC Medical and Scientific Commission advises athletes to, “treat the matter of TUEs seriously and in all instances seek expert advice. Using a prohibited substance or prohibited method on the 2018 Prohibited List before or without a TUE approval constitutes an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV)” (International Olympic Committee, 2017).

As of today, to meet the IOC TUE requirements, the CCES recommends that Team Canada athletes with TUEs from the CCES or their IF verify their:

  • TUE expiry date - to ensure it will be valid through the Games period,
  • TUE medication and dosage - to ensure it reflects the current treatment plan,
  • TUE authorizing body - athletes with a CCES TUE must verify their IF’s TUE requirements for the Games.

Team Canada athletes requiring a TUE must:

  • Prior to the Games - Contact their IF to obtain their TUE requirements,
  • During the Games period - Apply directly to the IOC Medical and Scientific Commission. Team physicians will facilitate this process.

In all cases, it is imperative that athletes keep their team physician and the COC Chief Medical Officer apprised of their TUE application status.

Athletes can obtain additional TUE information by:

Needle Policy

The IOC Medical and Scientific Commission states that the Games are “needle-free” for all participating athletes. Needles may be used only by qualified medical practitioners (physicians or nurses) for clinically justifiable treatment which must be declared on the designated form to the IOC. Exceptionally, needles may also be used for auto-injection by those Athletes with established clinical conditions requiring auto-injection and possessing a valid corresponding TUE (i.e. for Insulin dependent diabetics). (International Olympic Committee, 2017). The full policy can be found here.


The IOC Medical and Scientific Commission reminds athletes that, “the use of nutritional supplements is discouraged as it may lead to an adverse analytical finding. Supplements should only ever be used if medically required and always under the guidance of a medical professional (such as the team doctor or sports dietician) in order to minimise the risk of an adverse analytical finding” (International Olympic Committee, 2017).

The CCES reiterates that there is no way to guarantee that any supplement is free of prohibited substances – even those that do not list a prohibited substance on the label. Athletes are strictly liable for anything found in their sample. Additional information about the doping risks associated with supplement use can be found here.


In November 2015, the IOC Medical and Scientific Commission convened an expert group to review the available scientific and clinical evidence on Sex Reassignment and Hyperandrogenism. As was the case for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, the IOC will place no additional rules on hyperandrogenic female athletes for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang. Additional information can be found here.

Works Cited

International Olympic Committee. (2017, September 13). Anti-doping Rules - PyeongChang 2018-IOC-NOC Relations-Newsletter/Bulletin of Information.