CSAC Changes Drug Testing Procedures

MMA Junkie snuck this into a longer report:

The California State Athletic Commission has taken steps to strengthen its drug-testing process for combat sports.

The CSAC has signed a contract with UCLA for the processing of fighter drug-testing samples through the university's laboratory, which is certified by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Even though they refuse to admit that there was anything wrong with their previous testing facility and procedures, they are clearly sensitive to the criticism they recieved in the aftermath of the Sean Sherk case:

"The process was always good. We followed everything that we were instructed and how we were trained by the personnel from the lab," Douglas said. "I think the challenges that have been issued to us, and that we have faced, have made us better and stronger, because as situations have risen up, it's allowed us to open up and expand our thought process on how this needs to be tightened up. I believe we get better and better with each passing month."

A key part of that improvement is the commission moving its testing program to the WADA-certified facility at UCLA. If a fighter's A sample comes up positive for anabolic steroids at the UCLA lab, the B sample will be tested at another WADA-certified facility elsewhere in North America.

In the future, the commission will utilize only WADA labs for the processing of samples.

While they won't admit to past mistakes (if any were made), its a very good thing that they're taking steps to improve their testing procedures. Well done CSAC.

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