Thursday, June 4, 2015

Alcohol use and abuse

Tackling Harmful Alcohol Use

Tha last OECD report is focused on health impact of alcohol and what should we do to avoid harmful effects. Key findings are the following ones:
  • Alcohol use has both beneficial and detrimental effects on the health of individualdrinkers. At the population level, the latter outweigh the former in all countries.
  • The risk of death for young male adults and young and middle-aged women increasessteadily with alcohol consumption, with no beneficial effects overall, but with relatively
  • Approximately four in five drinkers would reduce their risk of death from any causes ifthey cut their alcohol intake by one unit (10 grams) per week.
  • Measures of the health benefits and harms associated with alcohol use may need to
  •  Life years potentially gained, quality of life and individual preferences over the timing ofoutcomes are important elements in the analysis of policy options.
  • Alcohol policies have to balance welfare benefits and losses. Harms to people other than drinkers are more effectively reduced by tackling heavy drinking. Price and regulation policies are more likely to affect consumer welfare.
  • Harms to others, addiction, and consumers’ inaccurate perception of risk provide strong justification for government action in addressing the problem of harmful alcohol use.
The last two statements are those that should shake politicians to develop some of the proposals contained in this report. 

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