Drugs in sport and the pharmacist’s role

Sep 16 , 2013

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Athletes are prohibited from using a selected range of methods and drugs (substances and medicines) in – and out of – competition.

The prohibited substances (and practices) are detailed by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and implemented in Australia by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA).

While there is a media focus on “testing positive” athletes can be sanctioned on eight anti-doping rule violations (ADRVs) that incur a penalty.

Pharmacists have a key role in supporting athletes in maintaining their health, aiding recovery and providing essential information about the quality use of medicines in the context of their engagement with sport.

At PAC 13, Sydney University’s Andrew McLachlan will present on the subject of Drugs in Sport, highlighting that pharmacists should also know that athletes who are required to use medicines for selected medical conditions are able to obtain a therapeutic use exemption under certain circumstances.

The presentation will also examine how medicines literacy is a critical aspect for athletes including an understanding of the nature, safety, quality and status of supplements and substances purchased from a variety of sources.

Professor McLachlan   is a pharmacist, academic, teacher and researcher with experience in clinical and experimental pharmacology and research into the quality use of medicines.

He is Professor of Pharmacy (Aged Care) in the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Sydney based at Concord Hospital. His research focuses on understanding the causes and consequences of variability in response to medicines and how this informs the quality use of medicines.

The theme for PAC13 is ONE profession, ONE focus, ONE voice which will focus on unity in the profession, in the delivery of services and in the goal of better health outcomes.

These are the keys to the profession growing in the future and remaining viable and sustainable while continuing to improve the health and wellbeing of the population.

PAC13 will be held at the Brisbane Convention Centre from 10-13 October 2013. To register, go to psa.org.au/pac