Athletes to be tested for PED’s

Athletes to be tested for PED’s. Belize is preparing for the Central American Games to be held in March but a few athletes will spend the next few days worrying whether they could get kicked off their team for having performance-enhancing drugs in their system. PlusNews caught up with Patrick Henry of the National Sports Council who outlined the procedure for the recently established anti-doping systems.

Patrick Henry – National Sports Council:
vlcsnap-2013-02-21-19h33m43s9It’s a urine sample that was collected by the doping control officers. The athletes will split the sample given, in front of the Doping Control Officer, into the A&B sample.  The “A” bottle, the “B” bottle, [the athletes] will open, they will close, in front of the doctors, the Doping Control Officers. The athletes will sign off that this has taken place, This then will be shopped to, in the case of Belize, we are using UCLA Olympic Lab. So on Monday we ship via DHL, which is the official carrier of the Olympic Movement and the Royal Anni-Doping Agency, to ULCA Olympic Lab. And within a week’s time we will have the result of the Anti-Doping Test.

Five athletes will be tested including at least one female. Henry explained that the consequence of being tainted with doping can follow you around for a long time. Even before the Lance Armstrong and Marion Jones sagas…  there was the 1997 ladies’ softball silver medallists at the Central American Games that had their medals stripped when a competitor tested positive for doping.

Patrick Henry – National Sports Council:
vlcsnap-2013-02-21-19h36m43s239We decided to use the 5 major disciplines, and in the case of athletics and softball, they have medaled at practically every sport in the region. In the case of softball, softball medaled at every major event in the hemisphere that they’re entitled to participate in.  In fact in 1997, Belize won a silver  medal at the Central American Games in San Pedro Sula, and one of the female athletes tested positive for prohibited substance.  The substance was in the Slim-Fast that she was taking.  The country lost the medal.  The entire team was stripped of the silver medal.

And to stop the doping culture from taking root, Henry says the Council is seeking funds for an education program:

Patrick Henry – National Sports Council:
We have informed the national federations.  We try to give then what is available to us. There is a prohibited list that comes out every October, and we shared that information with the national federations. Since last year we have been at the University of Belize, through Lydia Harris, where we have talked to the Pharmacy students, in giving them the prohibited list, the Latin names as well as the generic names, or the local names, so that they are aware that it contains prohibitive substances.

Tests begin today and continue through Saturday.

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