Global Status Report: Alcohol Policy
Nonserial Publication
World Health Organization
ISBN-13    9789241580359 ISBN-10    9241580356
Order Number    11500564
Price    CHF    60.00 / US$    72.00 Developing countries:    CHF    42.00
English     2004        209   pages
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that there are about 2 billion people worldwide consuming alcoholic beverages and 76.3 million with diagnosed alcohol use disorders. From a public health perspective, the global burden of alcohol, both in terms of morbidity and mortality, is considerable; alcohol consumption causes 3.2% of deaths (1.8 million) and 4.0% of Disability-Adjusted Life Years (58.3 million). Overall, there are causal relationships between alcohol consumption and more than 60 types of disease and injury.
To alleviate this burden of alcohol consumption, many countries have, across time, employed a great diversity of strategies. Alcohol policy, i.e. measures by government to control supply and demand, minimize alcohol-related harm and promote public health, is among the most important strategies. In short, alcohol control measures affect alcohol consumption levels and drinking habits, which in turn have an effect on alcohol-related social and health problems.
Research evidence shows that it is possible to develop and implement comprehensive and effective alcohol policies. In the past twenty years, considerable progress has been made in the scientific understanding of the relationship between alcohol policies, alcohol consumption and alcohol-related harm. This cumulative research evidence should provide a scientific basis for public debate and governmental policy making in search of policies that protect health, prevent disability and address the social problems associated with alcohol consumption.