National Athletic Trainers' Association has Strong Voice on Timely Issue of Performance Enhancing Drugs
Athletes’ use of performance enhancing drugs has been one of the top news stories this week. A cover story in last Sunday’s New York Times Magazine titled “In Pursuit Of Doped Excellence” addressed this issue. President Bush, in his State of the Union address, proposed an additional $23 million for schools that want to use drug testing and called on coaches, teams, owners and others to take the lead and help get rid of steroids in sports now. The National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) has a steadfast position on the importance of reducing the use of these drugs on and off the playing field. Members of the NATA, whom the American Medical Association recognizes as allied health care professionals, are on the front line in the battle against drug use and abuse in athletics. Certified athletic trainers (ATCs) specialize in the prevention, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries and illnesses that occur to athletes and the physically active. They know first hand, the negative effects steroids and performance enhancing drugs can have on healthy athletes. Certified athletic trainers in the professional, college/university and high school settings often are the first to identify athletes with potential drug abuse problems and are involved in research on the effects of steroids and performance enhancing drugs. In addition, ATCs provide drug education and are involved in the drug testing process. The National Athletic Trainers’ Association and its members are working to eliminate drug use and abuse from athletics and schools and remain a powerful voice on this issue.