The World Health Organisation’s [WHO] Global Strategy to Reduce the Harmful Effects of Alcohol identifies as a policy priority “ensuring broad access to information and effective education and public awareness programmes among all levels of society about the full range of alcohol-related harm… and the need for, and existence of, effective preventative measures”.
Education and persuasion strategies are often labelled as the most popular approaches to the prevention of alcohol-related problems. However, evidence suggests that without the support of other environmental interventions such as controls on affordability, availability and promotion of alcohol, information and education programmes do not lead to sustained changes in drinking behaviour. It can therefore be argued that education and information programmes play an important role as part of a comprehensive alcohol strategy, however on their own they do little to reduce alcohol-related harm.
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