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WHO Called for More Action Against Alcohol-related Deaths
- Updated: May 14, 2014
Alcohol has a tradition in our society dating back thousands of years: as a “social lubricant” at informal occasions, as a crowning supplement to culinary creations or as “world champion thirst-quencher” (as the advertisement for a beer recently put it).
But with over 3.3 million deaths reported per year for alcohol consumption, World Health Organisation has called all the governments to take measures to reduce the same.
In a statement, Asst Director-General for Non-communicable Diseases and Mental Health of WHO, Dr Oleg Chestnov stated that it is important to put in more measures to ensure people are protected from the negative consequences of alcohol consumption.
“We found that worldwide about 16 percent of drinkers engage in heavy episodic drinking often referred to as binge drinking which is the most harmful to health,” said Dr. Shekhar Saxena, director for mental health and substance abuse at WHO.
According to the report released May 12, alcohol consumption can lead to addiction and increase peoples risk of developing more than 200 diseases, including liver cirrhosis and some cancers. Report further stated that in the overall death count, 7.6% of men and 4% are women die due to alcohol induced harm. Further, as the number of women using alcohol is increasing, this rate is expected to hike steadily in the future. The report added that apart from causing death it also causes disability in younger adults in the age group of 20 and 39.
WHO has recommended all governments to put in place policies that would control usage of alcohol like restrictions on the age limit, drink and drive policies, restricting usage through taxation and pricing, creating awareness on the harmfulness of alcohol consumption and finally providing affordable treatment for people with alcoholism issues.
“More needs to be done to protect populations from the negative health consequences of alcohol consumption,” said Dr. Oleg Chestnov, WHO assistant director-general for noncommunicable diseases and mental health.