New USADA test helps fighters avoid marijuana fails

Jeff Novitzky, UFC 232, USADA, marijuana
Image: Puffpuffpost.com

The UFC USADA program is introducing a new collection method via an oral fluid test that will help MMA fighters avoid failed drug tests for marijuana.

UFC Senior VIP of Athlete Health and Performance Jeff Novitzky took to Twitter to share the news of the new USADA testing method. Here’s what Novitzky said.

“UFC program has started piloting a new collection method (oral fluid). Biggest upside…it potentially will only detect use of in-comp prohibited only substances (like marijuana/thc) within hours of use…not what athlete did a week or month ago.”

The news is certainly music to the ears of UFC fighters who use marijuana out of competition, but not during in-competition. With this new USADA test, the likelihood of a fighter testing positive for using marijuana weeks or even months before the actual fight and having it show up during their oral fluid test is much less likely than it was before this new testing method was created.

Here is some more information on the new test directly from the USADA website. You can read about common questions and answers on the site.

“Dedicated to innovation in anti-doping, USADA is introducing oral fluid testing, a pain-free, non-invasive collection experience that is being piloted both in and out-of-competition in the UFC Anti-Doping Program. This testing method is safe, reliable, and can be administered anywhere.

Collecting samples through the pilot program is critical to validating the sample collection process and analytical methods, as well as securing athlete feedback. World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)-accredited laboratories and other global anti-doping partners will also play an integral role in evaluating and adopting these revolutionary new technologies for programs and athletes worldwide.

Starting on December 11, 2019, all UFC athletes, regardless of location, are subject to oral fluid testing. In preparation for your first oral fluid testing experience, here are answers to some of the questions you might have about the new collection method. You can also find a step-by-step guide demonstrating the collection process.”

What do you think of USADA’s new drug test for marijuana?