HISA/HIWU Resources

The Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU), the independent enforcement agency of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority’s (HISA) Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program, reminds industry stakeholders that the ADMC Program is set to go into effect on May 22, 2023. The Program initially took effect on March 27 of this year before being paused on March 31.


As was the case on the date of the initial implementation on March 27, industry participants should be aware of the following key changes that will apply nationwide as of May 22:


  • All Covered Horses will be subject to the ADMC Program regulations, which includes adherence to the Prohibited List of Banned and Controlled Medication Substances/Methods. Banned Substances are prohibited from being used, possessed, administered, or trafficked in relation to a Covered Horse at any time. Controlled Medications are permitted for use or administration in a Covered Horse, except in close proximity to a race or Vets’ List workout. As specified in the Prohibited List, certain Controlled Medications, i.e., corticosteroids, NSAIDs, analgesics, and local anesthetics, are regulated in samples collected following routine official timed workouts.
  • Lasix will be permitted in all races, except for 2-year-old races and stakes races. Lasix will also be permitted, regardless of age or class of competition, during training, including Vets’ List workouts.
  • All test selection will be overseen by HIWU using an intelligence-based strategy. While HIWU has the ultimate discretion to select Covered Horses for testing, intelligence from “boots-on-the-ground” industry participants, including state stewards and veterinarians, and continued cooperation with state racing commissions and laboratory/scientific partners will also inform the test selection process.
  • All sample collection personnel, including test barn staff, will have been trained by HIWU staff on ADMC Program-compliant procedures. Sample collection processes will be facilitated by a HIWU app that will serve as a paperless documentation system. The app will be prepopulated with relevant race-day and Covered Horse information from InCompass and the HISA Portal.
  • All laboratories utilized under the ADMC Program are accredited by the Racing Medication & Testing Consortium (RMTC), pending the implementation of the HISA Equine Analytical Laboratory accreditation, and will be held to the same performance specifications.
  • All laboratory results for samples collected under the ADMC Program will be reported to, and processed by, HIWU. The standard turnaround time for receiving Post-Race test results will be 10 business days after the laboratory’s receipt of samples, and the standard turnaround for Vets’ List clearance testing will be five business days after the laboratory’s receipt of samples.
  • HIWU will be responsible for distributing notices of Adverse Analytical Findings (i.e., positive test results) to Responsible Persons (e.g., trainers) under the ADMC Program and filing charges of ADMC Program violations against Responsible Persons.
  • Anti-Doping Rule Violations will be heard by members of the Arbitral Body, which is administered by JAMS, an independent third party. Controlled Medication Rule Violations will be heard by the Internal Adjudication Panel, whose members are selected by HISA and HIWU.


Industry participants should also note that national anonymous whistleblower platforms will relaunch on May 22. HIWU has partnered with RealResponse, the leading provider of safe and secure reporting platforms for athletes, teams, and organizations. Upon relaunch, the whistleblower platforms will accept information regarding violations of both the ADMC and Racetrack Safety Programs through telephone, text message, or email.


Examples of information that can be safely and anonymously submitted include names of Covered Horses, trainers, and owners that may be involved in a rule violation. Individuals will have the option to voluntarily provide their contact information so that the HIWU Investigations Unit can follow up, if needed. The whistleblower phone numbers, text message information, and email address will be available on the HIWU and HISA websites. Furthermore, the deadline for bisphosphonates screenings has been extended in response to the new implementation date. More information about the use of bisphosphonates under the ADMC Program can be found here.


Resources are available on the HIWU website under Education & Resources in PDF format for download. Recent uploads include resources on dietary supplements, differences in testing processes for routine timed workouts versus workouts to be released from the Vets’ List, and processes for retiring/unretiring a Covered Horse from the testing pool.


Additionally, please note that the Racing Medication & Testing Consortium has published withdrawal guidance to assist veterinarians and horsemen: Withdrawal Guidance Advisory.


Furthermore, the complete Prohibited Substance Lists for Banned Substances and Controlled Medications are available on HISA’s and HIWU’s websites.


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