Consequences of Doping

There are many risks associated with doping. From negative effects on mental and physical health, to loss of sponsorship or prize money, to permanent damage to an athlete’s image and relationships, it is important to understand and consider all consequences of doping. Below is a list of some of the common consequences of not competing clean.


The use of Performance-enhancing Drugs may have long- and short-term impacts on the athlete’s physical and mental health. 

Depending on the substance, the dosage and the duration of use, some substances have been proven to have severe side effects and can cause irreversible damage to an athlete’s body. 

In addition to the physical aspects, scientific research has shown that there is a considerable correlation between the use of Performance Enhancing Drugs and mental health issues. Most commonly, it was found that the use of doping substances can trigger anxiety, obsessive disorders or psychosis.


Being associated with doping or a doping offence will have an impact on the person’s reputation and social relations. In the public view, athletes or other persons convicted of doping are often considered cheaters and experience many forms of stigma.

Doping has a significant negative impact on the person’s private life and social interactions as people may feel that they no longer want to be connected to someone who has damaged the reputation of a sport and displayed poor judgement. 


A ban resulting from an Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) will have a significant financial impact on the individual. For athletes and Athlete Support Personnel, this includes the requirement to return prize money or a financial sanction. Other negative consequences of doping include termination of contracts and sponsorship deals, loss of government funding, grants and other forms of financial support.


An Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) will have an impact on an athlete’s ability to train and compete. For coaches and other Athlete Support Personnel, a ban may mean that they are no longer able to practice their profession and work with athletes. A sanction resulting from an ADRV can range from a warning to a lifetime ban from all sport.

It is important to note that individuals banned in one sport will also be prohibited from playing, coaching or working with athletes in any other capacity in a different sport.

It is also against the Code to work with any Athletes or Athlete Support Personnel who have been sanctioned byany Anti-Doping Organisation (IF, NADO, NGB) , as well as any coaches, trainers, physicians or other Athlete Support Personnel who are ineligible on account of an ADRV, or those who have been criminally convicted or professionally disciplined in relation to doping.

Substances and methods on the Prohibited List

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) produces a list of substances and methods that are banned in sport in the form of the Prohibited List. It is updated at least annually, with the new list taking effect on January 1 of each year. 

It is important that athletes and Athlete Support Personnel are familiar with the Prohibited List and know how to check whether medications are prohibited in sport.

According to the Code, In competition begins at 11:59 pm on the day before any competition an athlete is scheduled to compete in, up to and until the end of all testing associated with that competition. 

However, the period may differ in specific sports. Athletes should check with their IF to confirm if there are any changes to the in-competition period during the Games.

The in-competition period is very important to understand when it relates to substances that are prohibited in-competition. When a substance is prohibited in-competition, it must leave the athlete’s system by the time the said competition begins. It does not mean that the athlete must stop taking the substance only by the time the in-competition period begins. Different substances take different amounts of time to leave the system – athletes must be extremely careful to make sure that they are not caught with a positive test as a result of taking a substance prohibited in-competition.

The 2022 Prohibited List can be found on the WADA website.

This List applies during the Games and at all times. The List contains substances and methods that are: 

  • Banned at all times (both in-competition and out-of-competition)
  • Banned in-competition only
  • Banned in specific sports (i.e. Archery, Automobile, Golf)
  • Threshold - some substances are banned at a particular threshold.  A threshold is the level of the substance that is detected in a urine sample. This means that these substances are ok to use but only at a dose that will not exceed the threshold level when they are tested for.

A major change to the status of glucocorticoids came into effect on 1 January 2022. 

From 1 January 2022, all glucocorticoids administered by injection are now banned. Glucocorticoids are banned in-competition only. 

Athletes and athlete support personnel should consider the impact of the changes to the status of injectable glucocorticoids that came into effect in 2022.

If an athlete needs to use glucocorticoids by injection during the in-competition period, they need to apply, as soon as possible, for a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE). You will find more information on how to submit a TUE application during the Games on this page. 

In some cases, the use of glucocorticoids by injection during the out-of-competition period, may require a TUE (e.g. if it was used during the *washout time period and resulted in positive test).

* Washout period refers to the time from the last administered dose to the time of the start of the in-Competition period (i.e. beginning at 11:59 p.m. on the day before a Competition in which the Athlete is scheduled to participate, unless a different period was approved by WADA for a given sport).  

Glucocorticoids have different washout periods depending on the glucocorticoid administered and the dose.

Risks of supplement use

Is there a risk of doping when taking nutritional supplements?

Yes. Extreme caution is recommended regarding supplement use even when no prohibited substance is listed on the label. A number of positive tests have been attributed to the misuse of supplements, poor labelling or contamination of dietary supplements.

The use of dietary supplements by athletes is a concern because in many countries the manufacturing and labelling of supplements may not follow strict rules, which may lead to a supplement containing an undeclared substance that is prohibited under anti-doping regulations. Taking a poorly labelled dietary supplement is not an adequate defence in a doping hearing.
Further information on the UKAD website and see also Informed Sport which is a global testing and certification programme for sports and nutritional supplements.
Neither WADA nor the CGF is involved in any supplement certification process and therefore do not certify or endorse manufacturers or their products. WADA and the CGF do not control the quality or the claims of the supplements industry. There is always a risk and athletes are therefore advised to approach supplement use with extreme caution.

Athletes should review the relevant customs advice for any medication brought from a home country into a country hosting the Games. This information is also usually provided in the Customs and Freight Guide which is distributed by the Games Organising Committee.  


Remember that ingredients in similar brands of medication can vary among countries. Even over-the-counter medication for colds and headaches can contain banned substances. Before taking any medication, check the ingredients and ask a doctor or go to the Polyclinic. If you decide to take a supplement you should: 

  • Keep a small amount - if you test positive, you at least have the option of having your leftover sample scientifically tested to see if it was contaminated
  • Keep the batch-test certificate
  • Keep the proof of purchase, like a receipt
  • Keep a log of when and how much you take

Use of medications and Therapeutic Use Exemptions

What is a Therapeutic Use Exemption?

Athletes may have illnesses or conditions that require them to take medications or undergo procedures. If the medication or method an athlete is required to use to treat an illness or condition is prohibited as per the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) Prohibited List, a TUE may give that athlete the authorization to use that substance or method both in and out of competition without invoking an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) and applicable sanction. Applications for TUEs are evaluated by a panel of physicians, the TUE Committee (TUEC).

A TUE is a certificate granted for a set prohibited substance, in certain dosage, with a limited period of validity. An application for a TUE must be based on a documented medical condition and diagnosis, and the TUE will only be granted under strict criteria as outlined in the International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions (ISTUE).

Athletes must absolutely avoid taking a medication containing a prohibited substance without a valid TUE.

All of the four following criteria must be met for obtaining a TUE (for more details, please refer to the WADA International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions (ISTUE) Article 4.2):

The athlete has a clear diagnosed medical condition which requires treatment using a prohibited substance or method;

  • The therapeutic use of the substance will not, on the balance of probabilities, produce significant enhancement of performance beyond the athlete’s normal state of health;
  • The prohibited substance or method is an indicated treatment for the medical condition, and there is no reasonable permitted therapeutic alternative;
  • The necessity to use that substance or method is not a consequence of the prior use (without a TUE), of a substance or method which was prohibited at the time of use.
  • For a TUE to be granted, all four of the above criteria must be met. All TUE applications are reviewed by a panel of experts called the TUE Committee (TUEC).

Who should apply for a TUE?

Athletes participating in the Commonwealth Games are subject to the CGF TUE Application Process. They need a TUE to take a prohibited substance or use a prohibited method. Athletes should verify with their International Federation to know to whom they need to apply and how they can apply retroactively.

If the athlete participating in The Commonwealth Games already has a valid TUE granted by their National Anti-Doping Organisation or International Federation which is recorded on ADAMS then the CGF will recognise it.

If the athlete does not already have a TUE granted by their NADO or IF, the athlete must apply directly to CGF for a TUE (as soon as possible – identify a Games-time period if there is one) using the CGF TUE Application Form. A TUE granted by CGF will be specific to the Commonwealth Game and will not be valid for another event. 

Can I Get a Retroactive TUE?

You may only apply retroactively for a TUE to CGF if:

  • You required emergency or urgent treatment for a medical condition.
  • There was insufficient time, opportunity or other exceptional circumstances that prevented you from submitting the TUE application, or having it evaluated, before getting tested.
  • You tested positive after using a substance Out-of-Competition that is only prohibited In-Competition (for example glucocorticoids).

In rare and exceptional circumstances and notwithstanding any other provision in the ISTUE, you may apply for and be granted retroactive approval for a therapeutic use of a prohibited substance or method, if considering the purpose of the Code, it would be manifestly unfair not to grant a retroactive TUE.

This unique retroactive TUE will only be granted with the prior approval of WADA (and WADA may in its absolute discretion agree with or reject the CGF’s decision).

Important note:

Using a prohibited substance or method without a TUE could result in an Anti-Doping Rule Violation.

In case an application for a retroactive TUE is necessary following sample collection, you are strongly advised to have a medical file prepared and ready to submit for evaluation.

How to apply for a TUE

A Therapeutic Use Exemption must always be approved prior to the start of the treatment. In emergency or exceptional cases, a retroactive TUE may be granted. 

Athletes participating in the Commonwealth Games may obtain a valid TUE granted by their National Anti-Doping Organisation or International Federation.

Upon arrival at the Commonwealth Games, it is possible to ask the TUE Committee for emergency TUEs. If an athlete is not sure of where they should apply for a TUE, they should contact the respective International Federation.

Please download the CGF’s TUE Application Form below, and once duly completed and signed, send it together with the required medical file to the CGF TUE Committee at 

Your TUE application must be submitted in legible capital letters or typing.

The medical file must include:

  • A comprehensive medical history, including documentation from the original diagnosing physician(s) (where possible);
  • The results of all examinations, laboratory investigations and imaging studies relevant to the application.

Any TUE application that is not complete or legible will not be dealt with and will be returned for completion and re-submission.

To assist you and your doctor in providing the correct medical documentation, we suggest consulting the WADA’s Checklists for TUE applications for guidance and support, and Medical Information to Support the Decisions of TUECs for guidance on specific common medical conditions, treatments, substances, etc.

Keep a complete copy of the TUE application form and all medical information submitted in support of your application, and proof that it has been sent.

What if my TUE application is denied?
A decision to deny a TUE application will include a written explanation of the reason(s) for the denial. If it is not clear to you, please contact the CGF TUE Committee to understand exactly why the TUE was denied. Sometimes, there may be a critical piece of information, diagnostic test, laboratory results missing, etc. In which case, you should re-apply to us.

You may refer the matter to Australian Sports Drug Medical Advisory Committee (ASDMAC) for appeal. You should send the same information that you submitted to us, and on which the decision to deny the TUE was based on, via a secure on-line method or by registered mail at:

If you want to learn more about TUEs, visit At-a-Glance Therapeutic Use Exemptions on ADEL.

All the information contained in a TUE application, including the supporting medical information and any other information related to the evaluation of a TUE request, is kept strictly confidential and treated in accordance with the Athlete’s Declaration contained in the TUE process and in the CGF TUE Application Form.

All members of the TUEC and any other authorised recipients of the TUE request and related information (as described in the Athlete’s Declaration) are subject to a professional or contractual confidentiality obligation.

Contact information
For any further information and questions in relation to CGF TUE process please contact 
Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) Application Form Word_0.docx (796.09 KB)
Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) Application Form_Final.pdf (80.61 KB)

Testing procedures, including urine, blood and the Athlete Biological

Who can be tested?
All athletes competing at the Commonwealth Games can be tested any time at any place during the Games Period 19 July to 10 August 2022. All athletes can be tested at any time regardless of their competitiveness. The level of the athlete is not a condition to be tested by any ADO: for instance, from Elite to Age-Group athletes of all ages can be tested. 

What can be tested?
Urine and blood are currently the two different types of samples that can be taken. All samples are sent anonymously for analysis to an accredited laboratory. All the procedures for testing in place are standardised between all of the laboratories around the world: one can see these procedures in the WADA International Standard for the Laboratories. 

The sample is split into two during the sample collection procedure. First sample A will be analysed, and Sample B will be stored securely. Remember samples can be stored for up to 10 years.

When can an athlete be tested? 
Testing can take place In-Competition during any event, or Out-of-Competition in a training venue or anywhere else, even at hotel or village. An athlete will never be informed before they are going to be tested to guarantee the effectiveness of the testing and the results.

Who is conducting the test?
An accredited person called a Doping Control Officer, who received specific education on how to conduct a doping testing procedure will supervise the sample collection. These people will have identification on them that can be shown when they notify the athlete that they have been selected for testing.

What are the steps of a Doping Control Procedure for Urine Test?

  1. Selection of Athlete: The athlete is selected for doping control by the CGF which has the Testing Authority to test the athlete during the Games Period, will also oversee the whole management of the case (from the sample  collection to the closure of the case).
  2. Notification to the Athlete: A Chaperone or a Doping Control Officer will notify the athlete that they have been selected for testing and they will show their identification. The athlete’s rights and responsibilities will be explained (see below), and the chaperone will ask for identification. Once it has been established that the chaperone has the right person, the athlete will sign the notification form, confirming that they have been notified that they have been chosen for doping control.
  3. Reporting: The chaperone will escort the athlete to the doping control station (DCS) where the testing will be taking place. They should report immediately to the station unless a delay of testing has been granted for a permitted reason (see section below).
  4. Selecting Sample Collection Equipment: A choice of sample collection kits will be offered to the athlete. The athlete will select one and make sure this kit is sealed and has not been tampered with.
  5. Providing a Sample: Once ready to submit the sample, the athlete will wash their hands or wear the provided gloves and then provide their urine sample. The Doping Control Officer (who must be of the same gender as the athlete) will directly observe the providing of the sample. Clothing should be removed or lifted above one’s chest and below one’s knees so there is an unobstructed view.
  6. Splitting the Sample: A minimum of 90ml of urine must be provided. It is not mandatory to provide this volume at once: this can be done on more than one occasion until the required amount is reached. Once achieved, the Doping Control Officer will ask that the athlete splits the sample between the A and B bottles (starting with the B bottle first). The athlete will make sure that these sample collection bottles have not been tampered with and check that the code on the kit matches with what is written on the doping control form.
  7. Sealing the Sample: Once the sample is split the athlete will seal the bottles while making sure that the tamper-evident bottle lids are securely fastened so that there is no leakage.
  8. Checking the Sample’s Concentration (Specific Gravity): For the accredited laboratory to be able to analyse the sample, it needs to be of a specific concentration. The Doping Control Officer will test the urine sample to make sure it is within range. If not, an athlete may be asked to provide another sample.
  9. Filling the Doping Control Form: The Doping Control Form (DCF) must be completed and signed to complete the process. The athlete must list any medications and/or supplements that they have taken within the last seven days. The athlete can consent to allowing their sample to be used for research purposes too, if they want to. The Doping Control Officer must also sign the DCF. The athlete will be given a paper copy or sent an electronic copy of the DCF that they should keep for reference.

Are there any differences for the Blood Testing Procedure?

Although the main sample collection process is similar for the blood and urine procedures, there are still some specifics for blood sample collection that the athlete should be aware of:

  • Providing a Sample: The Doping Control Officer shall ensure the athlete is offered comfortable conditions and shall instruct the athlete to remain in a normal seated position with their feet on the floor at least 10 minutes prior to providing a blood sample.
  • The Blood Collection Officer (BCO: an official who is qualified and authorized to collect a blood sample) shall assess the most suitable location for venipuncture that is unlikely to adversely affect the athlete or their performance (This is usually non-dominant arm unless the other arm is more suitable).
  • In the event the amount of blood that can be removed during the first attempt is insufficient, the BCO shall repeat the procedure up to a maximum of 3 times in total.
  • Sealing your Sample: The athlete must seal the sample into a Tamper Evident Kit as directed by the Doping Control Officer who will check that the sealing is satisfactory.

Athletes with Impairments May Request Modifications to the Procedure

To ensure that the needs of an athlete with impairments are considered, some modifications might be necessary in the standard sample collection procedures. These modifications may not compromise the identity, security, or integrity of the sample.

The Doping Control Officer may decide that alternative equipment or station will be used if required to enable the athlete with impairment to provide the sample. Should the athlete require additional equipment to provide a sample, it is their responsibility to provide it. However, all equipment used must be approved by the DCO.

Athletes who are Minors Have Special Considerations

An athlete who is a Minor (a person under the age of 18) should be notified in the presence of an Athlete representative (who shall not be a Minor too) and should be accompanied by a representative throughout the entire sample collection procedure.

When an athlete is ready to provide a sample, the DCO watching the athlete provide their sample must always have an observer watching them and their conduct. This observer can be accompanied by the athlete’s representative. Only the DCO or Chaperone is to directly observe the athlete providing their sample. Neither the Second Observer nor the athlete’s representative should directly observe the passing of the urine, unless requested by the athlete.

What about a need of delay for In-Competition Testing?

There may be situations where a delay in immediately reporting to the Doping Control Station may be appropriate. There is a right to request a delay for the following reasons, but the delay may not be granted:

  • Participate in a medal ceremony;
  • Fulfil media commitments
  • Compete in further competitions;Perform a warm-down;
  • Obtain medical treatment;
  • Locate a representative and/or interpreter;
  • Obtain photo identification;
  • Any other exceptional circumstances which may be justified, and which shall be documented.

What about a need for a delay for Out-Of-Competition Testing?

These are the permitted reasons to request a delay for an Out-Of-Competition Testing but, again, the delay may not be granted:

  • Locate a representative;
  • Complete a training session;
  • Receive medical treatment;
  • To obtain photo identification;
  • Any other exceptional circumstances which may justified, and which shall be documented.

What are an athlete’s rights?

  • Athletes have rights within the Testing Procedure that must be strongly respected. From the notification of Doping Control, the athlete has the right to:
  • Be accompanied by a representative and/or interpreter of their choice
  • Request a delay in reporting to the Doping Control Station for valid reasons as detailed above
  • Ask for additional information about the sample-collection process
  • Request modifications.

What are an athlete’s responsibilities?

Having rights implicates also having responsibilities. An athlete has the responsibility to:

  • Always remain within direct observation of the Doping Control Officer or the Chaperone from the notification until the completion of the sample collection procedure.
  • Produce identification such as competition accreditation or ID/Passport/Driving’s licence.
  • Comply with the entire sample collection procedure.
  • Report immediately for a test, unless there are valid reasons for a delay (as detailed above).

What happens if an athlete refuses to submit to a sample collection?

As defined by the WADA Code, if a person evades, refuses, or fails to submit a sample collection for an Anti-Doping Control, they will be committing an Anti-Doping Rules Violation and so subject to the relevant consequences (outlined in article 10 of the Code).

What should an athlete do if something unusual happened during a Testing Procedure?

On the doping control form, there is a section where an athlete has the opportunity to write comments about the procedure. This is an important tool that the athlete should use to record anything of note that they would like the Anti-doping Organisation undertaking the test to know.

If the athlete thinks of something after the fact, then they should contact the CGF Anti Doping Manager at to make a report of any abnormalities.

Whereabouts at the Commonwealth Games

Whereabouts is information that allows athletes to be located for testing. It is information used by those who have authority to test athletes. Not providing the information or providing inaccurate or misleading information can result in consequences.

CGAs shall require those athletes registered in ADAMS in their IF or NADO’s Registered Testing Pool (RTP) to continue to comply with their regular obligations to file whereabouts filing information at all times including during the Commonwealth Games Period.

CGAs shall require those athletes who are not registered in ADAMS in their IF or NADO RTP to provide arrival, departure and location information. 

The CGF may also require further specified whereabouts information by requesting such from a specific CGA at any time. For this purpose, CGAs are required to hold rooming lists, training schedules and competition schedules for their athletes for the period of the Commonwealth Games, Upon request of the CGF, this additional whereabouts filing information is to be provided by the relevant CGA in the manner stipulated by the CGF.

No Needle Policy

There will be a strict, No Needle Policy in operation during the Games. Needles are not to be used except by:

  • Medically qualified practitioners for the clinically justified treatment of an injury, illness, or other medical condition; or
  • Athletes requiring auto-injection therapy for an established medical condition (such as insulin dependent diabetes).These are also situations for which a valid TUE may also be required.

Declaration forms must be submitted for any use of a needle. These forms are located below. Refer to the CGF-ADS and the form itself for further information regarding obligations.

An investigation will be initiated by the CGF Medical Commission should any needles or related paraphernalia be discovered. Note this obligation also covers the use of IV infusions.
CGF No needle policy.pdf (308.87 KB)
No Needle Form_0.pdf (40.85 KB)
No Needle Form Word _0.docx (53.15 KB)

Testing for Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games

To view the full breakdown of testing during the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, please click here.

Essential Resources

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) have joined forces to create and launch a new interactive e-learning education course targeted at athletes and coaches intending to participate in the Birmingham 2022,
The course, which is hosted on WADA’s Anti-Doping Education and Learning platform, ADEL, includes modules explaining which substances and methods are prohibited (including recent changes to the status of glucocorticoids), whereabouts information and requirements at the Games, how testing will be carried out, and what to do if an athlete needs to apply for a therapeutic use exemption.  The course is not mandatory but all Birmingham 2022 participants are strongly encouraged to complete the course.
An additional course is available for medical professionals. ‘ADEL for Medical Professionals at Major Games’ has open access, enabling any medical personnel participating in Birmingham 2022 to undertake this course to assist their preparation.

CGF Anti-Doping Rules (919.93 KB)
Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) Application Form PDF_1.pdf (83.45 KB)
Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) Application Form Word_1.docx (796.09 KB)
Birmingham 2022 - CGF TUE processes (002).pdf (143.41 KB)
No Needle Form Doc (53.15 KB)
No Needle Form PDF (40.85 KB)
CGF 2022 - Needle declaration process.pdf (178.09 KB)
CGF 2022 - Results Management process - AAF.pdf (167.13 KB)