WADA suspends Madrid laboratory with immediate effect

A lab technician analyzes samples in an anti-doping test.

A lab technician analyzes samples in an anti-doping test. (Image credit: AFP)

The World Anti-Doping Agency has announced that it has suspended the accreditation of the anti-doping laboratory in Madrid with immediate effect. WADA said the suspension is a “direct result” of its March declaration that the Spanish Anti-Doping agency (AEPSAD) was non-compliant with the WADA code.

The Madrid laboratory is thus prohibited from carrying out WADA-related anti-doping activity, chiefly the analysis of urine and blood samples. The laboratory has 21 days in which to appeal the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Spain’s anti-doping agency was one of seven placed on WADA’s ‘watch list’ in November of last year, and was given until 18 March 2016 to implement rules compliant with the WADA code.

WADA noted that Spain’s other anti-doping laboratory in Barcelona – the Fundació Institut Mar D'Investigacions Mèdiques – retains its accreditation because more than 60% of the samples it has analysed in the past year have come from outside of Spain.

The Madrid laboratory is the fifth WADA-accredited laboratory to be sanctioned in recent months. Laboratories in Lisbon, Bloemfontein and Beijing were all suspended, while Moscow’s laboratory had its accreditation revoked in April. The Madrid suspension leaves just 30 WADA-accredited labs active worldwide.

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