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Researchers claim one in eight deaths in Europe caused by alcohol

The ALICE RAP network of over 150 scientists warns of the need for governments to take action over the problem of alcohol-related deaths, during the project’s second annual General Partners’ meeting in Newcastle this week.

The first brief in the organisation’s new series of policy papers reveals the damaging extent to which harmful consumption of alcohol affects the lives of people throughout Europe, and calls for evidence-based policy solutions to tackle the problems that stem from problem drinking.

According to its sources, alcohol causes “around one in eight deaths of people between the ages of 15 and 64 in Europe” and the damage that results from alcohol costs each European around 300€ every year “through reduced productivity and in costs to the health system, the welfare system and the criminal justice system”.

In order to combat these issues, the ALICE RAP network believes that alcohol policy measures based on scientific evidence could break the negative pattern of harmful consumption and its associated costs. The brief states, “the most effective policy approaches, and also the fairest and most targeted, are those which nudge people towards consuming fewer grams of alcohol by moderating price and availability and by banning alcohol advertising”.

The ALICE RAP project (Addiction and Lifestyles in Contemporary Europe – Reframing Addictions Project) brings together a network of over 150 researchers who study many different aspects of addiction from a wide range of different disciplines. More information is available at www.alicerap.eu.

A copy of the brief, titled ‘Alcohol – the neglected addiction’, is available here. (pdf 506kb)