Anti-Drugs Policy

Vision Sport Ireland is the National Governing Body (NGB) for sport for vision impaired people in Ireland. Vision Sports Ireland promotes an ethos of ‘clean sport’ that is fair to all. To this end VSI has adopted an Anti-Doping Policy and requires that all its members comply with it. This policy complies with the Anti-Doping Rules of Sport Ireland, with the Anti-Doping Code of WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) and with the Anti-Doping Policy of the International Blind Sports Association (IBSA).

Vision Sports Ireland’s Memorandum and Articles of Association specifically refer to our Anti-Doping Policy. Please note the following extract:


4.1) The Anti-Doping rules of Vision Sports Ireland are the Irish Sports Council’s Anti-Doping Rules as amended from time to time or as substituted, supplemented or altered.

4.2) Individual players / athletes and members will be required to:

  • (a) Subscribe to a drug free ethos in sport.
  • (b) Participate in the Irish Sports Council’s Anti-doping programme.
  • (c) Undertake, if required, any urine or non-urine based testing techniques operated by the relevant International Federations.

It is important that all people participating (as competitors, coaches or as assistants) in either national or international competitive events become familiar with their responsibilities, and their rights, in relation to complying with anti-doping programmes. They should also make themselves familiar with the procedures used during the testing process itself. Assistance can be provided by a PA when a vision impaired person is being tested to help with reading and completing the required paperwork and other tasks. Members of VSI must comply with the Anti-Doping Rules and Regulations.

The current reality is that only those attending and competing at high level national and international competitions are likely to be selected for drug testing but all members need to be aware that testing could occur at any time. Anti-Doping testing is unlikely during recreational sporting activities.

Vision Sports condemns, and will not condone, either the use of banned substances or the use of banned methods for improving performance during competitive sport. VSI supports fairness and equality during competition and believes that doping, or the use of banned doping methods, will not provide this. Neither will doping promote good health for its members. We believe that using any illegal substances or doping methods is against the spirit of sport.

All members, individual players / athletes, managers / coaches and PAs are required to:

  1. Comply with the VSI Anti Doping Policy and support a drug free ethos in sport.
  2. Participate in the Irish Sports Council’s Anti-doping programme.
  3. Submit to any Anti Doping testing, as required, requested by the relevant International Federations. Assistance can be provided by a PA when a vision impaired person is being tested to help with reading and completing the required paperwork and other tasks.

Click here for a link to Sports Ireland’s Anti-Doping website

Click here for the current Irish Anti Doping Rules of Sport Ireland

Click here for the current list of Prohibited Substances and Methods

Requests for further details or clarification of Vision Sports Ireland’s Anti-Doping Policy should be directed to our office email:

Anti-Doping Rule Violations

Vision Sports are required to take action if the anti-doping rules are contravened. This is called an anti-Doping Violation. An anti-doping violation is deemed to have occurred if there is evidence of:

  1. Use of a Prohibited Substance in your Sample
  2. Use of a Prohibited Doping Method in your Sample
  3. Attempted use of a Prohibited Substance or Method
  4. An athlete Refusing to Provide a Sample when requested
  5. Tampering or Attempted Tampering with any part of the drug testing procedures
  6. Possession of a Prohibited Substance or Method
  7. Trafficking, Administration or the Attempted Administration of any Prohibited Substances or Method
  8. An athlete having Committed 3 Whereabouts Failures within an eighteen month period.

Under the updated Irish Anti-Doping Rules 2015 in the unlikely event one of our athletes fails a test it is the Sports Council who will then undertake the case against the athlete. The NGB will continue to have a number of responsibilities in relation to anti-doping activities however.

Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) Policy

Many visually impaired sportspeople routinely use medications for a variety of medical purposes, including those relating to their visual impairment. Such medications may cause a positive drug test finding to occur if that person is tested.

In order to permit the use of medications for normal medical purposes, rather than to enhance performances, a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) may be applied for, and granted to, an athlete who requires medication from the prohibited list to treat a medical condition. The athlete applies for a TUE on a TUE Form where all the necessary details are recorded. It is the responsibility of the athlete / member to provide the necessary TUE Form. If a medication is needed to treat a medical condition, the prescribing doctor must provide clinical justification on the TUE form for the use of the (prohibited) medication – i.e. this form is a declaration of what drugs the person is using and why. A TUE must be presented to anti-doping drug testers if testing takes place. The level at which an athlete competes determines whether they need to apply to the Irish Sports Council or to their International Federation for a TUE. If applying to the Irish Sports Council there are two options

  1. To apply for a TUE before using a prohibited substance (a Pre-Test TUE) or
  2. To apply for a TUE retroactively following a positive drug test (a Post-Test TUE)

For the full TUE policy and more detailed Information phone 01-8608818 or email:

For the most up to date Anti-Doping Information, please refer to

Sport Ireland,
Anti-Doping Unit
Block A Westend Office Park,
Dublin 15,
D15 KPW7

Telephone: 01 8608800

Useful Resources might include the following

An interesting video from the Sport Ireland called Blackmark. For more information on “Blackmark,” see

Medications bought in the Republic of Ireland can be checked on this webpage. It includes links to the following:

  1. Drugs in Sport Database on
  2. ‘Medication Checker’ Smartphone App from eirpharm
  3. Your G.P., Consultant or Pharmacist can check in MIMS Ireland.
  4. Medications bought in Northern Ireland, U.K., U.S.A and Canada can be checked on
  5. Check the medication against the current WADA Prohibited List

You can view + download a handy anti-doping wallet card. (pdf) Alternatively, you may prefer the text-only version.

To view and download the latest Sport Ireland Anti-Doping Fact Sheets click here.


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