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WHO edges closer to global alcohol policy

The development of global alcohol-harm reduction strategies will be on the agenda for the World Health Assembly in May, after the World Health Organisation’s executive board agreed on an expanded mandate on the subject at a meeting last week.

The resolution from the executive board suggests a strategy for reducing alcohol harm in the Assembly’s member states, while taking into account that “strategies and interventions must be implemented in a way that takes into account different national, religious and cultural contexts”, also taking into account varying resources and capabilities. For this reason, the WHO director-general will develop a draft strategy which will be implemented at a national level.

The strategy takes into account recent reports about alcohol harm, including a WHO expert committee report entitled “Problems Related to Alcohol Consumption”.

The sixty-first World Health Assembly is scheduled to take place from 19 – 24 May 2008.

Clinton Cawood, 30/01/08 

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