PBA DRUG TESTING UNRELIABLE?

Manila, June 6, 2003 -- The possibility of human intervention and so-called 
"false positive" results that could muddle the mandatory drug tests the 
Philippine Basketball Association has been conducting league-wide emerged 
on Thursday in separate hearings at the Senate and the House of 
Representatives.

The findings could lead to the league reversing its ruling on some of the 
players found positive for illegal substances over the past four months, 
but PBA Commissioner Noli Eala has already said his office is standing firm 
on the suspensions it has meted out to six cagers who recently submitted 
affirmative urine samples.

At the hearing of the joint Senate Committees on Public Order and Illegal 
Drugs and Games and Amusements, Sen. Robert Jaworski pointed out the 
possible switching of vials containing the urine samples of the suspect 
players, noting that the samples pass through several hands before they 
could be tested by the Department of Health.

Dr. Socorro Yanez, who leads the DOH team the PBA tapped for the testing, 
said they did the testing "in good faith and based on international 
standards" but could not dispute the fact that the samples first go from 
the player to the Health Department team, a league representative and 
finally to a medical technologist who will perform the laboratory test.

Meanwhile, Dr. Jose Raul Canlas, director of the Philippine Center for 
Sports Medicine, told the House Committee on Youth and Sports that a "false 
positive" or inaccurate test is inevitable in drug exams if the testers 
fail to take into account the intake of regulated drugs plus dietary and 
food supplements.

"In any international competition, we advise our athletes who will undergo 
drug test not to take some supplements as it could result to 
false-positive," Canlas, who has served as physician for various sports 
competition worldwide, told the panel.  (By Maricel Cruz, Reporter and 
Sammy Martin, Manila Times)

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

© Copyright, 2003  by PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE
All rights reserved


PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE [PHNO] WEBSITE