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September 1, 1989

Drug Testing of Athletes: Test the Team's Pooled Urine

JAMA. 1989;262(9):1183. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03430090045012

To the Editor.—  The statement by James C. Puffer, MD, head physician for the US Olympic team in Seoul, South Korea, in the December 23/30 issue of JAMA1 that it would be desirable, in his opinion, to have random testing during both training and competition periods attracted my attention.The problem of discrimination and individual rights, individual player contracts, and so on can be overcome by having all athletes, coaches, and other persons who appear on behalf of the winning team on the field or playing floor contribute a urine sample immediately after winning a competition. Portions from each sample could be mixed and the combination tested for drugs of abuse. If the sample is positive, the team loses the competition. No identifiers of individual persons are required.All individual records achieved in the game would stand. The score book would otherwise not be harmed.Yards gained, points scored,