Pharmacy services at the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games

Mark Stuart, Young In Kwon, Sandy Jeong Rhie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Pharmacy services at large multisport events support safe and effective medication use. Our aim is to describe the contribution of pharmacists and to share the pharmacy experiences at the 2018 PyeongChang Olympic and Paralympic Games. Methods The data collected included the accreditation details of patients and prescribers indicating: sport, country, athlete or non-athlete status, and prescription details including: medication, strength, frequency, length of treatment, for the period of the Olympic Games (1-26 February 2018) and the Paralympic Games (5-20 March 2018). The numbers of prescriptions dispensed were analysed by medication category, sports and country of the patient. Results A total of 5313 medication items were dispensed over the course of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (athletes: 670; non-athletes: 4615; unknown: 28), for a total of 2360 patients. 72 of 82 countries (87.8%) had fewer than 20 patient visits. The first high peak (Olympic: 5.0%; Paralympic: 7.3%) of daily volume of prescriptions were dispensed in the 2 days prior to the Olympic and the 1 day prior to Paralympic opening ceremonies. Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) and International Olympic Committee NeedlePolicy were well managed and compliant with the regulations. Conclusion Pharmacy services at major multisport games include dispensing over 5000 prescriptions, supporting the TUE and IOC Needle Policy processes and providing clinical information to athletes and prescribers on drugs in sports and the World Anti-Doping Agency regulations of drugs prohibited in sport. During the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, pharmacists played a crucial role in delivering safe and effective pharmacy service based on their expert knowledge in antidoping and the clinical use of drugs in sport.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1105-1110
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number17
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding The research was supported by Ewha University-Industry Collaboration Foundation of Ewha Womans University (1-2018-0317-001-1). The publication was financially supported by the Yonsei Institute of Sports Science and Exercise Medicine (YISSEM).

Publisher Copyright:
© Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2019. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.


  • olympics
  • sports medicine


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