USADA and UFC® today announced changes to the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, which will go into effect on Wednesday, April 1, 2017.
Most notably, the updated Policy outlines new requirements for how long athletes must be in the UFC Registered Testing Pool (RTP) and subject to testing before they are eligible to compete. The 2017 Policy provides specific RTP inclusion requirements for athletes who have never been in the UFC RTP and for athletes who’ve previously been in the RTP but had their contract terminated or non-renewed at the choice of the UFC, as well as for athletes who have voluntarily removed themselves from the UFC RTP. If an athlete must be removed from a Fight Card due to injury or other unforeseen circumstances, the 2017 Policy also states that RTP inclusion requirements will be automatically waived for both new and returning athletes who did not voluntarily remove themselves from the UFC RTP.
In addition, the updated Policy requires that athletes entering the RTP must disclose prohibited substances used within the prior year and specifies how the disclosure or non-disclosure of previously used prohibited substances will be treated in terms of eligibility and anti-doping policy violations. The updated Policy further clarifies what is to happen if an athlete retires while serving a period of ineligibility.
Furthermore, the 2017 Policy provides updated time limits for the in-competition period and expands the definition of complicity to encompass complicit behavior in doping conduct committed by non-UFC athletes.
The updated Policy and a Summary of Changes are available online.
USADA conducts the year-round, independent anti-doping program for all UFC athletes. USADA is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental agency whose sole mission is to preserve the integrity of competition, inspire true sport, and protect the rights of clean athletes. In an effort to aid UFC athletes, as well as their support team members, in understanding the rules applicable to them, USADA provides comprehensive instruction on the UFC Anti-Doping Program website regarding the testing process and prohibited substances, how to obtain permission to use a necessary medication, and the risks and dangers of taking supplements as well as performance-enhancing and recreational drugs. In addition, the agency manages a drug reference hotline, Drug Reference Online (UFC Global DRO), conducts educational sessions, and proactively distributes a multitude of educational materials, such as the Prohibited List, easy-reference wallet cards, and periodic athlete alerts.
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