An online course aimed at protecting the integrity of the classification system and which must be completed by athletes who want to represent Australia at next year's Paralympic Games in Tokyo has been launched.
Paralympics Australia claimed the creation of the system, developed in collaboration with the Australian Anti-Doping Agency, sends a "clear message" that the national governing body is actively tackling the issue.
Intentional misrepresentation is a common concern in Paralympic sport, although very few cases have been proven.
Paralympics Australia warned, however, that misconduct in classification remains an "ever-present threat".
The organisation is hoping the online course, completion of which is mandatory for athletes hoping to be selected on the Australian Paralympic team for Tokyo 2020, will help educate competitors on the topic.
The course, which "specifically targets intentional misrepresentation, the banned practice of knowingly deceiving, disrupting or misleading the classification panel in any way", was made available by Paralympics Australia last week.
It outlines the classification process, the requirements of athletes, coaches and support staff to comply, provides training on ethical decision making and gives an overview of penalties for non-compliance.
"We are proud to be one of first National Paralympic Committees in the world to develop such a course like this and it’s our hope that it will provide clarity to all Australian team members on the importance of the classification," said Paralympics Australia chief executive Lynne Anderson.
"Integrity in Australian sport has been a major talking point recently and Paralympic sport is not immune.
"By introducing this mandatory course, we are sending a clear message that every member of our Paralympic team in Tokyo must know the rules, abide by the rules or face the consequences.
"Classification is the cornerstone of Paralympic sport and when classification rules are not respected, everyone suffers."