Rio's doping control lab for 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics reinstated by WADA
Wednesday, 17 October 2012
October 17 - Rio's doping control laboratory, expected to play a major part in Brazil's hosting of the 2014 FIFA World Cup finals and the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, has been reinstated by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) following its partial suspension on January 18.
The sanction on the UFRJ Rio de Janeiro Doping Control Laboratory – hugely embarrassing to the Brazilian authorities – related specifically to conducting isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) testing on samples, the element of its operation which caused it to falsely report last year that Brazilian beach volleyball player Pedro Solberg Salgado had tested positive for testosterone.
The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) provisionally suspended Solberg after the initial finding at the Rio facility, which is Brazil's only WADA-accredited laboratory.
But the FIVB lifted the sanction against the 25-year-old from Rio just one month later when the Brazilian laboratory delayed analysing the B-sample.
FIVB's experts questioned the Brazilian paperwork when the B-test confirmed the presence of banned drugs and ordered retests from the leading WADA laboratory in Cologne in Germany, which showed that the sample was in fact clean with no traces of testosterone.
"In this important battle against doping, we cannot afford to be losing confidence in the analytical results of WADA-accredited laboratories," said FIVB President Jizhong Wei said in a statement.
"As much as we need to identify and sanction those who cheat, we must ensure that no athlete is faced with a false positive."
During the suspension period, the Rio facility continued to be accredited to conduct all other anti-doping testing as outlined by the International Standard for Laboratories (ISL), but IRMS testing required the transferral of samples to another WADA-accredited IRMS laboratory.
WADA also conducted a document audit and compliance testing, and in collaboration with its ISO accrediting body ensured that proper corrective actions had been implemented.
Answering to the International Standard for Laboratories, WADA is responsible for accrediting and reaccrediting anti-doping laboratories, as well as ensuring that they maintain the highest quality standards.
This monitoring is conducted mainly through WADA's Proficiency Testing Program and ISO assessment by independent national accreditation bodies.