REVEALED: British athletes fear taking the Covid-19 vaccine could make them FAIL drugs test and be banned from the Tokyo Games – with ‘clinically vulnerable’ Paralympians lIkely to be offered the jab soon
- British athletes are demanding urgent answers over whether having the Covid-19 vaccine could cause them to fail a drugs test
- The roll-out of the vaccine in the United Kingdom started earlier this week
- World Anti-Doping Agency are seeking clarification from vaccine makers
British athletes have demanded urgent answers over whether taking a Covid-19 jab could cause them to fail a drugs test.
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) are speaking to pharmaceutical companies but are yet to find out if ‘the constituents of the vaccines are prohibited in sport – and whether the technologies being used will pose any complications for detecting doping‘.
UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) admitted on Thursday they are still seeking clarification from WADA before advising athletes over whether the vaccines are safe to use without breaching anti-doping rules.
The roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccine in Great Britain started this week but British athletes are desperately seeking answers about whether its content will cause them to fail drugs tests
Paralympic swimmer Tully Kearney tweeted her concern about what’s in the vaccine
But British Paralympic swimmer Tully Kearney tweeted: ‘I’m actually shocked being in the ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ group and likely to be called for vaccination soon that this has not been dealt with sooner!
‘Do I risk potential serious illness/death from Covid or a doping ban and miss out on going to Tokyo?!’
Concerns were raised in the House of Lords last month that the Pfizer vaccine – which was rolled out in the UK this week – could either mask gene doping or represent a breach of anti-doping rules.
81-year-old Lorna Lucas receives the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccine in London this week
The rescheduled Olympics and Paralympics are due to take place in Tokyo next year
Nick Wojek, UKAD head of science and medicine, said: ‘We are in regular contact with WADA to obtain progress updates.
‘Whilst it is too early to make a definitive statement on any particular vaccine, WADA has confirmed that it is extremely unlikely that the sequences used for such vaccines violate anti-doping regulations.
‘Equally, the risk that the excipients used for such vaccines will pose issues for clean sport and the anti-doping regulations is anticipated to be small.
‘We await further updates from WADA on the matter before being able to advise athletes on the anti-doping status of any specific vaccine.’