WADA has published its first Code Compliance annual report ©Getty Images

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has said more than 3,000 corrective actions were implemented by signatories to the WADA Code last year, as the organisation published its first Code Compliance annual report.

The report is aimed at highlighting key findings by WADA in monitoring the compliance of Code signatories in 2019.

Signatories include National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs), International Federations and organisers of major events.

The report outlined that the activities of 152 signatories were assessed during 2019, with 68 requiring either further review or further information based on data accessed by WADA.

WADA said that after review 43 requests were sent requiring further information or clarification, with 15 corrective-action reports then sent.

Nine signatories ultimately entered the compliance procedure, having failed to implement the corrective actions within a three-month period given by WADA.

Three signatories were ultimately referred to WADA’s Compliance Review Committee (CRC), with the report saying decisions are pending.

WADA identified testing as the main source of non-conformities, with the organisation saying that strategies have been developed to assist signatories.

This includes a number of templates and checklists, which are on WADA’s Anti-Doping e-Learning platform (ADeL).

The report also highlighted challenges for code compliance and the action taken by WADA in response, with the ongoing investigation into Russia among the key areas noted.

“The significant resources, both human and financial, involved in the Russian investigation, which limited the scope of WADA’s Intelligence and Investigations Department’s (I&I) activities almost entirely to Russia and reduced significantly the ability of I&I to potentially investigate other Signatories,” the report said.

“The Russian case also required three additional, extraordinary in person meetings of the CRC.”

WADA outlined the process over making corrective actions to ensure code compliance ©WADA
WADA outlined the process over making corrective actions to ensure code compliance ©WADA

WADA said the organisation took action by using additional finances and resources were obtained from WADA’s general budget throughout the year to manage the Russian investigation and the additional CRC meetings.

The Russian investigation was one of “significant, high-profile, WADA-led investigations”, the report found, which has contributed to a number of compliance activities by WADA departments, Standing Committees and governing bodies.

WADA added that the report found a clear link between improving the quality of testing programmes and financial resources, while adding that a better understanding of costs associated with quality testing programmes is required to assist signatories to increase their budgets and resources.

The creation of the International Testing Agency and the implementation of partnerships between developed and developing NADOs was found to have significantly contributed to the compliance of the relevant signatories’ activities.

“WADA is pleased to publish its first-ever Compliance Annual Report for 2019,” Frédéric Donzé, WADA chief operating officer, said.

“This report is an element of the new Compliance Strategy and another important piece of WADA’s commitment to transparency.

“Among other objectives, the report is intended to clearly outline the achievements and challenges of WADA’s compliance monitoring programme, which aims to reinforce the standard of code signatory organisations’ work worldwide.”

WADA said the report outlines the achievements and challenges of the compliance monitoring programme, measuring objectives against key performance indicators through quantitative and qualitative analysis, including areas for improvement.

The report is claimed to detail interpretation and implications of the findings, as well as trends and lessons learned.

Opportunities for improvement will become the foundation for the following year’s compliance plan, WADA said.

The full report can be accessed here.