16 July 2020, Lausanne, Switzerland – The International Testing Agency (ITA) has signed eight new cooperation agreements with National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs) in order to increase efficiency and build synergies in the global fight for clean sport.
The ITA currently handles anti-doping programs of over 45 International Federations and Major Event Organisers and, therefore, conducts testing activities all over the globe. In order to enhance the effectiveness of these anti-doping efforts, information exchange with NADOs as local partners and experts is key. The ITA considers that the knowledge and existing structures of NADOs at national level must be leveraged through collaboration, and the alignment of both national and international anti-doping programs is critical to efficient global anti-doping operations in the benefit of all athletes.
Therefore, the ITA is very pleased to announce that it has recently entered into collaboration agreements with Anti-Doping Denmark (ADD), the Agence française de lutte contre le dopage (AFLD), China Anti-Doping Agency (CHINADA), Doping Authority Netherlands (Dopingautoriteit), Japan Anti-Doping Agency (JADA), Korea Anti-Doping Agency (KADA), the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS) and UK Anti-Doping (UKAD). The main fields of cooperation include the sharing of intelligence and information, the coordination of testing plans, collaboration on specific cases, data processing and the collection of samples by these NADOs on behalf of the ITA. Furthermore, training and education programs for top-level athletes, athlete support personnel and anti-doping workforce can be delivered jointly and contribute to a more consistent coverage of doping prevention efforts.
Benjamin Cohen, ITA Director-General: ”We are very pleased and honoured to partner with these leading national anti-doping organisations. These agreements will allow us to jointly strengthen fairness in sports nationally and internationally. The fight against doping requires efficient collaboration platforms to share expertise, data and intelligence. Joining forces with national organisations will create synergies on many fronts and coordinate our efforts in the benefit of athletes and the anti-doping community as a whole.”
“Today’s approach in anti-doping is increasingly driven by intelligence”, underlines Michael Ask, Chairman of the Institute of National Anti-Doping Organisations (iNADO). “In order to be effective, especially when it comes to systematic doping across borders and sports, a smart and collaborative effort from everyone involved is key. Intelligence only bears results when information is shared, and so I am pleased about this series of freshly formed collaborations between the ITA and National Anti-Doping Agencies, both in my position as Chair of iNADO and as CEO of Anti-Doping Denmark. These partnerships will also offer clear benefits to athletes, for example in terms of better coordination of doping controls or through joint efforts in the area of education and prevention.”
Daniel Yule, Swiss alpine ski racer, Olympic and World Cup gold medallist, sees clear benefits from closer collaboration and information exchange between the ITA and NADOs: “As a professional athlete, it can occur that I or some of my colleagues get tested twice on the same day by the NADO and the International Federation. We all know that a test one day doesn’t exempt us from another test on the same day or the next however the fight against doping has limited resources. As such, I’m happy to hear that ITA is actively seeking partnerships which will allow better coordination between the entities fighting against doping and make the resources available to go much farther.”
The ITA has already established frameworks of collaboration with USADA, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, Azerbaijan National Anti-Doping Agency (AMADA), the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES), the Egyptian Anti-Doping Organization (EGY-NADO) and the Anti-Doping Agency of Serbia (ADAS). Additionally, the ITA fosters partnerships with NADOs and other partners to specifically promote quality testing across the world through its IDCO Training & Certification Program. The program will enable existing trained Doping Control Officers (DCOs) currently working at local or national level to attain an advanced ITA Certification and to deliver testing programs at international sporting events such as international championships, Olympic Games, and other major events.
The ITA strongly believes that the anti-doping community is able to bring the fight for clean sport to the next level by working hand-in-hand through close partnerships and cooperation. Consequently, the ITA welcomes to its network any National Anti-Doping Organisation that wishes to join this initiative and will actively seek further collaborations.