PGA Tour Tightens up Drug Policy
The US PGA Tour is enforcing tighter rules on the use of recreational drugs and says it will name and shame any player suspended for violating its revised drug policy. Previously, the Tour would only acknowledge if a player had been suspended for using performance-enhancing drugs.
Urine will continue as the primary method of testing with the golfers randomly receiving test requests. Blood tests will now also be introduced following a player’s round from the start of next season. Only about 10 mL of blood will be needed for each test.
Most of the drugs tested for by the PGA Tour can be detected in urine; however, human growth hormone and erythropoietin (EPO) can’t. The move is in line with the World Anti-Doping Agency, which oversees testing in the Olympics. The Tour’s revised policy is also adding to the banned list asthma medicines, allergy and anti-inflammatory medications, and pseudoephedrine over a certain threshold.
“While we are extremely pleased with the implementation and results of the PGA Tour anti-doping program to date, we believe these changes to our program are prudent in that they further our objectives of protecting the well-being of our members and better substantiate the integrity of golf as a clean sport,” said PGA Tour Commission Jay Monahan.
The PGA Tour will launch a comprehensive education programme to ensure that all of its players understand the new changes to the testing procedure. They will also provide full details of the banned substance list and the adjudication process before the start of next season.
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