Competitive sport sees athletes push themselves to their physiological limits, always striving to extract maximum performance from their bodies. They look for something that will give them an edge over the opposition and improving the oxygen carrying capacity of the blood is a common strategy. Sometimes this competitive nature sees the athlete turn to performance-enhancing substances, where the lines are often blurred about what is and is not permitted.
We are no stranger to high profile cases, including recent high profile doping scandals in the AFL – should athletes should be allowed to take drugs to enhance their abilities? Where is the limit?
We bring together a panel of experts to debate these questions – from those who have proposed strict changes to anti-doping regulations to those who think it’s an athlete’s choice.
Dr Peter Bruckner
Peter Brukner is a specialist sports and exercise physician and the founding partner at the Olympic Park Sports Medicine Centre in Melbourne. Peter is a world renowned sports medicine clinician and researcher. He has recently been Head of Sports Medicine and Sports Science at Liverpool Football Club and Team Doctor for the Australian cricket team.
Associate Professor André La Gerche, Head of Sports Cardiology at Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute
Andre is a cardiologist specialising in cardiac imaging, a Future Leadership Fellow of the National Heart Foundation and a NHMRC Career Development Fellow. He completed a PhD at the University of Melbourne and 4 years of post-doctoral research at the University Hospital of Leuven, Belgium, where he is a Visiting Professor.
Associate Professor David Prior
Associate Professor David Prior is Director of Non-invasive Cardiac Imaging at St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne and Head of the Cardiology & Heart Failure Outpatient Clinics. In addition he is an Associate Professor with the University of Melbourne and a Clinical Research Fellow at the St Vincent’s Institute. Major clinical and research interests are in echocardiography, pulmonary hypertension, sports cardiology and heart failure management.
Professor Julian Savulescu
Professor Julian Savulescu has held the Uehiro Chair in Practical Ethics at the University of Oxford since 2002. He holds degrees in medicine, neuroscience and bioethics. He is the Director of the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics within the Faculty of Philosophy. He is Director of the Oxford Centre for Neuroethics, which is one of three strategic centres in biomedical ethics in the UK funded by the Wellcome Trust. In 2014, he was awarded a Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator award to work on Responsibility and Health Care. He is also Director of the Institute for Science and Ethics within the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford, where he examines the ethical implications of technology affecting the mind, as well as leading an interdisciplinary programme on collective responsibility for infectious disease. In 2017, he will establish the interdisciplinary Wellcome Centre for Ethics, Innovation, Globalisation and Medicine with co-Directors in Public Health, Psychiatry and History.