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Alcohol is responsible for 11% of male deaths and 2% of female deaths in Europe

A new study of the global burden of disease attributable to alcohol has found that Europe has the highest level of alcohol attributable deaths and the highest burden of disability-adjusted life years lost (DALYs) in the world.

Alcohol accounts for 11% of deaths amongst men and 2% of deaths amongst women in Europe, compared with a worldwide average of 6% and 0.6% respectively. Similarly, the number of DALYs lost due to alcohol was highest in Europe, at 17% for men and 4% for women, compared with 7% and 1% worldwide.

This study was published in the Lancet, alongside an investigation into the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of policies to reduce the harm caused by alcohol. As with previous studies of a similar nature, this study found that the most effective measures are those that increase price and reduce availability of alcohol. There was no evidence that school-based education programmes reduce levels of harm, though the authors acknowledge that public information campaigns have a role in increasing acceptance of alcohol policies.