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What you should know about alcohol?

The misuse and abuse of alcoholic beverages is a public health threat. It can lead to injuries, liver cirrhosis, cancers, cardiovascular diseases, and premature deaths. Socially, alcohol misuse and abuse can lead to poverty, family and partner violence, and poor social acceptance. Effective alcohol policy will help to reduce the prevalence of alcohol-related injuries, cardiovascular disease, cancers of the mouth and throat, esophagus, stomach, and liver, premature deaths, and disabilities. It will also improve the quality of life for individuals and communities, and potentially improve the socio-economic status of those otherwise affected by excessive alcohol use.

Why is this important?

  • Alcohol is the leading risk factor for disease in the Western Pacific.
  • In some Pacific Islands, the coconut toddy, or also known as tuba, can be distilled into an alcoholic drink. It is a source of cheap unregulated alcohol and has a high content of alcohol.
  • Alcohol use causes harm to the individual and the people around them. Alcohol use is linked to violence, crime, sexual abuse, road traffic accidents, and loss of work, putting others at risk or danger.
  • Alcohol drinking by mothers is harmful to the health of the developing fetus.
  • Almost 10% of all deaths for young adults ages 19-29 are due to alcohol related causes.

How you can address and reduce the harmful use of alcohol in the Pacific Islands?

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