Monday, October 31, 2011

Alcohol News - 44/2011


Helsingin Sanomat (Finland) - Consumption and private imports of alcohol continue to fall
In the early part of 2011 the Finns bought less alcohol than in the same period a year before. The same applied to drinks purchased from abroad: a clearly smaller amount of alcoholic beverages were brought in as souvenirs from overseas than a year earlier.
CBS (USA) - Amy Winehouse death puts alcohol poisoning in spotlight
"Death by misadventure." That was an English coroner's curiously quaint way of saying Amy Winehouse drank herself to death. The troubled singer was found with empty vodka bottles in her room and more than five times the legal limit for drinking in England, coroner Suzanne Grennaway said on Wednesday.
BBC News (UK) - Children claim alcohol intake of 28 units a week
A small number of children as young as 12 claimed they drank the equivalent of 19 glasses of wine a week when questioned for a health survey.
BBC News (UK) - Alcohol warnings 'still being ignored', minister says
Many people still do not accept the harm that alcohol can do to their bodies, despite government warnings, the public health minister has said.
eGov monitor (Scotland) - Nicola Sturgeon Welcomes Rising Support For Minimum Pricing For Alcohol
A leading Canadian academic and major player in the alcohol industry have added their names to the growing list of supporters backing the Scottish Government's bid to introduce a minimum price for alcohol.
Newswise - Moderate Alcohol Consumption is Associated with Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth
Just one drink per day for women—two for men—could lead to small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) and subsequently cause gastrointestinal symptoms like bloating, gas, abdominal pain, constipation and diarrhea, according to the results of a new study unveiled today at the American College of Gastroenterology’s (ACG) 76th Annual Scientific meeting in Washington, DC.
The Republic - Medical: Alcohol's impact affected by genes, studies show
And there's plenty of evidence that light to moderate alcohol consumption can have health benefits for many people but carries grave risks for others. The trick lies in figuring out just who falls in which pathway.
News Tonight - Limit Alcohol Intake To Avoid Lung Cancer, Says Study
Lung cancer is a deadly form of cancer that can be considered as a leading cause of deaths across the globe. The disease is already known to have a close association with poor lifestyle and habits such as tobacco consumption.
New Vision (Uganda) - Excessive Alcohol consumption: A key driver of chronic poverty
Excessive Alcohol Consumption is a key ‘driver and maintainer’ of chronic poverty in Uganda. Discussions on excessive alcohol consumption in the country have for long been in the back –seat of what is considered as ‘personal choices’ making alcohol a new frontier for chronic poverty in Uganda.
Scotsman (Scotland) - Alcohol and drugs lead to one in seven house fires
ALCOHOL and drug misuse were linked to at least one in seven house fires in Scotland last year, according to a new Scottish Government report.
Nurse.com (USA) - Medicare to cover screening for alcohol misuse
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has announced two new national coverage determinations that cover screenings for alcohol misuse and depression for Medicare beneficiaries.
PR Newswire (USA) - Calif. Study Shows 24/7 Alcohol Bracelets Curb Future DUIs
A newly released study of DUI offender data in Riverside County shows that Hard Core Drunk Drivers (HCDDs) who were monitored with 24/7 alcohol bracelets saw a re-arrest rate of nearly one-half the state average for repeat DUI offenders.
Irish Times (Ireland) - New drink-driving limits come into effect at midnight
LOWER DRINK-driving limits come into effect from midnight, reducing the maximum blood-alcohol level to 20mg per 100ml of blood in some cases.
Medical News Today - Fearing Stigmatizing The Patient - Doctors Will Cite Alcohol As Cause Of Death, But Not Smoking
Not wanting to stigmatize the deceased, UK doctors are not in general citing smoking as a cause of death on death certificates, although they will cite alcohol in cases where alcohol is a clear cause.
OHS Canada (Canada) - Random drug and alcohol testing approved
Public transit workers in Toronto will soon be subject to random drug and alcohol testing as the city's transit service was given the go-ahead to begin testing employees in safety-sensitive positions.
Daily Mail - All-day drinking brings 670,000 surge in 'sickies'... and women are FIVE times more likely to bunk off work
Around 670,000 working days a year are being lost because of the relaxation of the drinking laws, researchers claim.
Independent Online (South Africa) - Govt to look into booze ads ban
The Health Department has agreed to look into an alternative solution to the proposed ban on alcohol advertising during a meeting held on Friday with health Department officials and outdoor media company Kena Media.
Namibia Economist (Namibia) - Alcohol misuse a “graving” concern
While alcohol is often said to provide employment and income for the people who sell it, it has the opposite effect in the household of many patrons. It is for this reason that the availability of alcohol should be decreased or at the extreme totally eradicated in the country.
Read more
News Wales (Wales) - 494 alcohol deaths in Wales and 152 from drugs
There were 494 alcohol related deaths in Wales in 2010 and 152 drug misuse related deaths. From 2006 to 2010, admissions for mental and behavioural disorders due to opioids have increased overall by 53.2 per cent (44.4 per cent in males and 68.1 per cent in females).
Read more
Bromsgrove Advertiser (UK) - New county campaign to tackle sexual and drink related violence
A NEW campaign that aims to tackle sexual and drink related violence during the festive season has been launched in Worcestershire.
Read more
Hong Kong Standard (Hong Kong) - No limits set in battle of the booze
An action plan launched to reduce dangers related to alcohol abuse has no drinking guidelines. The World Health Organization has identified the use of alcohol as the third leading risk factor when it comes to noncommunicable diseases, which cause about 2.5 million deaths worldwide every year.
Read more
South China Morning Post (China) - Call for crackdown on teenage alcohol abuse
The government is being urged to take a tougher stance on a growing youth drinking problem by reinstating a wine duty or imposing age restrictions.
Read more
Medscape - Liver Cancer is 'Largely Amenable to Primary Prevention'
"Hepatocellular carcinoma, one of the most lethal human cancers, is largely amenable to primary prevention with existing knowledge and technology," according to American researchers. They report a study showing strong links between liver cancer and the modifiable risk factors of smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, and obesity, and between liver cancer and chronic infection with hepatitis B and C.
Read more
Herald Scotland (Scotland/France) - There is a strong case for taxing fizzy drinks, perhaps on the French model
While it is difficult for a dentist to disagree with the central thrust of your editorial (“Time to take more of the fizz out of the family diet”, The Herald, October 25), it missed the key issue as did the article (“Fizzy drinks are linked to increased teen violence”, October 25) and indeed the original study which led to it.
Read more
Austrian Independent (Austria) - Beer to become more costly
Beer drinkers may have to brace for price hikes. Officials at Austria’s leading breweries admitted considering price increases in the foreseeable future after Germany’s biggest producer of the beverage decided to jack up its prices.
Read more
UPI.com (Italy) - Report: Youth drinking a problem in Italy
Italians are generally drinking less although consumption is up among the country's young people, a report by an Italian think-tank says.
Read more

Sunday, October 30, 2011

FASD News - 43/2011


Irish Times (Ireland) - Experts differ on effects of alcohol in pregnancy
MOTHERS CAN ensure the best start in life for their children by abstaining from alcohol during pregnancy, said the HSE’s national director of family and childcare services.
Parkersburg News (USA) - FAS rates on the rise in West Virginia
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome rates are on the rise in West Virginia. A 2009 study by the West Virginia Perinatal Partners found one out of five West Virginia babies are exposed to drugs or alcohol before they are born.
AngolaPress (Angola) - Specialist advises pregnant women to abstain from alcohol
The specialist of Benguela General Hospital (HGB) maternity, Augusta Borges, urged Wednesday in this city pregnant women to abstain from excessive use of alcohol for better protection of babies during pregnancy.
IEWY News (EU) - John DALLI Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy Commissioner John Dalli urges action on tackling alcohol abuse 9th plenary meeting of the European alcohol and health forum Brussels
Some Member States are using alcoholic beverage labels to provide information about the risks of alcohol during pregnancy, and some alcohol producers have taken up this good practice on a voluntary basis. I believe that such labelling schemes are a powerful and direct way of influencing behaviour, by giving people the information they need to take a decision. I would very much like to see them implemented right across the European Union.
Winnipeg Sun (Canada) - FASD often an 'invisible impairment'
Often when we think of those who are homeless, we think of the mentally ill, the addicted and perhaps the physically impaired.
MarketWatch - Percussion Software Announces CDC Web Site on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Deploys Percussion's CM System to Drive Engagement and Streamline Web Site Infrastructure
Percussion Software, a leading provider of Web Content Management (WCM) software, today announced the web site supporting a key Center for Disease Control & Prevention initiative focused on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) has deployed Percussion's advanced CM System WCM solution.
BCLocalNews - Screen for FASD to prevent crime
I was pleased to read Phil Melnychuk’s report about the federal crime bill. The concerns expressed by lawyers Gordon Kehler and Rob Gunnell echo my own and I was pleased that your paper was able to provide the opinions of some local experts on this legislation.
Chilliwack Times - UFV prof to speak on new approaches to helping children with FASD
Where some people tend to focus on weaknesses, Chilliwack's Dr. Chris Bertram prefers to focus on strengths. The University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) kinesiologist has been working with a research team for five years, trying to find ways to help children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder live up their full potential.
Wayne State University - Wayne State University receives $655,500 grant from NIH to develop a computer-delivered intervention for alcohol use among pregnant women
A team of researchers at Wayne State University's Parent Health Lab in the School of Medicine have received a three-year grant to develop a computer-delivered intervention for pregnant women at risk for alcohol use, which can lead to lifelong negative effects on the fetus.

MATERIALS
NOFAS - Dr. Philip May on FASD Prevalence Rates
The National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (NOFAS) is the leading voice and resource of the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) community. Founded in 1990, NOFAS is the only international non-profit organization committed solely to FASD primary prevention, advocacy and support.
Newly completed FASD Cookbook and DVD Set
West Coast Alternate is a school designed to work with students with FASD. The inspiration for this cookbook came from a cooking class. When one of the students wondered if they would remember all the recipes from the classes, the group thought it would be a great idea to put a cookbook together with images to help. This is a look and cook cookbook.
The International Journal of Alcohol and Drug Research - Call For Papers: Special Issue on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders
The International Journal of Alcohol and Drug Research (IJADR), invites the submission of papers on biomedical, psychological, and sociological aspects related to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), to be featured in this special issue to be published in December, 2012. Accepted papers will be published online prior to their inclusion in this special issue in order to make the research available more quickly.

RESEARCH
Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet - Ord Valley Aboriginal Health Service’s fetal alcohol spectrum disorders program: Big steps, solid outcome
Over the past four decades the international community has sought to clarify the risks associated with maternal alcohol use and the associated disability of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD). Until recently, Australia has done little to raise awareness of FASD, study prevalence or assist individuals born with these disorders.
Alcohol and alcoholism - Universal Prevention is Associated with Lower Prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders in Northern Cape, South Africa: A Multicentre Before–After Study
Prevalence of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) is remarkably high in several provinces of South Africa; yet population-level knowledge of the harms of maternal drinking remains low.
ACB - Modulation by the GABAB receptor siRNA of ethanol-mediated PKA-α, CaMKII, and p-CREB intracellular signaling in prenatal rat hippocampal neurons
Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is a developmental neuropathology resulting from in utero exposure to ethanol; many of ethanol's effects are likely to be mediated by the neurotransmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA).
Alcoholism - A Review of Social Skills Deficits in Individuals with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders and Prenatal Alcohol Exposure: Profiles, Mechanisms, and Interventions
Future investigations should strive to reconcile the relationship between social skills deficits in FASD and variables such as gender, age, cognitive profile, and structural and functional brain impairments to enable better characterization of the deficits observed in this population, which will enhance diagnosis and improve remediation.
Alcoholism - Children with Heavy Prenatal Alcohol Exposure Exhibit Deficits when Regulating Isometric Force
Production of isometric (i.e., constant) force is an essential component of performing everyday functional tasks, yet no studies have investigated how this type of force is regulated in children with confirmed histories of heavy prenatal alcohol exposure.
Neurotoxicology and Teratology - Characteristics and behaviors of mothers who have a child with fetal alcohol syndrome
Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is a leading cause of birth defects and developmental disabilities. The objective of this study was to identify the characteristics and behaviors of mothers of children with FAS in the United States using population-based data from the FAS Surveillance Network (FASSNet).

COMING UP
EUFASD Conference 2012
Don't miss the 2nd European Conference on FASD 21 to 25 October 2012 Barcelona
FASD Learning Series via Live Webcast - Safety Planning for the Service Provider
The FASD Learning Series offers free education opportunities tailored to meet the unique needs of individuals affected by FASD and their family members/caregivers, support service providers, healthcare providers, educators, legal and justice services, and professionals in the research and evaluation field.

IN OTHER LANGUAGES:
Lietuvos rytas (Lithuania) - Nuo fizinio ir dvasinio negalavimo kenčia ne vien alkoholikių vaikai
Vokietijos gydytojas Hansas Ludwigas Spohras - specialistas neįgaliųjų vaikų, kurių motinos, būdamos nėščios, vartojo alkoholį. Duodamas interviu šalies žurnalui „Der Spiegel“ profesorius perspėjo, kad nėščiosioms pavojinga vartoti alkoholį.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Alcohol News - 43/2011


Euroalert.net (EU) - Commission stresses the need for action to protect young people from alcohol-related harm at the EU Alcohol and Health Forum
Although minimum drinking age in most EU Member states is set at 18 years old, the most recent European surveys show that half of school children aged 15 to16 years have drunk alcohol in the past month. In order to tackle this situation and take action to protect young people, experts, industry and other stakeholder have met at the the 9th plenary meeting of the European Alcohol and Health Forum held in in Brussels on 19 October.
The Local.se (Sweden) - Queen under fire for giving kids wine
The admission that the Royal children were allowed a glass of wine at festive occasions, followed by Coca Cola, despite being under age, has sparked criticism from Swedish temperance campaigners.
The Local (Sweden) - Teen alcohol programme has 'no effect': study
A nationwide programme aimed at tackling drinking among young people has 'no effect' at all on drinking habits, according to a new study.
World Trademark Review (Norway) - Alcohol brand owners might be allowed to advertise on Norwegian TV
Norway is on the verge of involuntarily allowing the advertising of alcoholic beverages on television, contrary to the country’s strict alcohol policy. This change may take place as a result of pressure from the European Commission, which requested an immediate implementation of the EU ‘Television Without Frontiers’ Directive (89/552/EEC).
Huffington Post (USA) - Excessive Alcohol Consumption Costs U.S. Economy Over $200 Billion Per Year
Heavy drinking is costing the U.S. economy more than $200 billion a year, mostly in lost workplace productivity, a U.S. health agency said on Monday.
LiveScience.com - Recession Fuels Risky Drinking for Both Jobless and Employed
People drink more during an economic downturn, suggests a new study showing that binge drinking, drunk driving and alcohol dependence increase when times are tough.
BBC (UK) - Avoid alcohol three days a week, doctors warn
Doctors say the government's alcohol guidelines could be improved to ensure they do not sanction daily drinking.
MedPage Today (USA) - Medicare to Cover Alcohol, Depression Screening
Medicare will pay for annual screenings for alcohol misuse and depression, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced.
Telegraph.co.uk (UK) – Two thirds of drunk teenagers given alcohol by parents‎
Officers in Newquay, Cornwall, said that when they contacted parents to tell them that they had confiscated drink from their children they were often abused and accused of spoiling the youngsters’ “fun”.
TheGloss - ‘Drunkorexia’ Is A Growing And Terrible Trend, Say Scientists
Not eating enough and drinking too much might be a practice familiar to many slightly un-hinged urbanites, but now scientists at the University of Missouri have released a study showing just how widespread this so-called “drunkorexia” problem is, especially among young people (our future!). According to findings released on Monday, 16% of college women surveyed reported restricting food calories in order to “save them” for alcohol.
UPI.com - Study: Music links alcohol, degrading sex
A U.S. adolescent who listens to 2.5 hours of popular music per day is heavily exposed to alcohol brands associated to degrading sex, researchers say.
Ivanhoe - Alcohol Linked to Lung Cancer
Having a beer belly should be of least concern for alcohol users.  According to three recent studies, heavy alcohol consumption is linked to a great risk of developing lung cancer, while specific ethnic groups, including African American men and Asian women, had slightly higher risks for lung cancer.
Daily Mail (UK) - BBC blows £70,000 on alcohol and leaving parties for staff as job cuts loom
The BBC has spent £70,000 on leaving parties at exclusive restaurants for its staff and on alcohol in the past year.
RTE.ie (Ireland) - Government plans to tackle alcohol misuse
Minister Roisin Shortall has told a seminar in Dublin that she is taking legal advice on how to tackle below-cost selling of alcohol.
EurekAlert - Association of quantity of alcohol and frequency of consumption with cancer mortality
A paper from the National Institutes of Health in the United States has evaluated the separate and combined effects of the frequency of alcohol consumption and the average quantity of alcohol drunk per occasion and how that relates to mortality risk from individual cancers as well as all cancers. The analysis is based on repeated administrations of the National Health Interview Survey in the US, assessing more than 300,000 subjects who suffered over 8,000 deaths from cancer. The research reports on total cancer deaths and deaths from lung, colorectal, prostate, and breast cancers.
NEWS.com.au (Australia) - Anger at Aldi's booze for a buck
DISCOUNT supermarket giant Aldi will begin stocking its shelves with $1 beers - including 80c cans of light - across New South Wales from next year, despite objections from NSW Health.
UCSD Medical Center - Genetically Influenced Responses to Alcohol Affect Brain Activation
A study by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine suggests that differences in brain activation in individuals with a low level of response to alcohol may contribute to their inability to recognize modest levels of alcohol intoxication.
Medical News Today - Popular Music Linked To Top Alcohol Brands - Is Industry Exploiting Underage Drinking?
Music like rap, hip hop and R&B often contain references to branded alcoholic beverages that are commonly linked to a luxury lifestyle which degrades sexual activity, violence, wealth, partying, and the use of drugs. Researchers at the University in Pittsburgh conducted a study published online in the international journal Addiction that reports that the average U.S. adolescent is heavily exposed to alcohol references in popular music.
NEWS.com.au (Pakistan) - Pakistan overturns ban on booze . . . for export
IT IS an Islamic republic where alcohol is forbidden to 97 per cent of the population and drinkers can face 80 lashes of the whip under holy law - but in a move set to anger religious conservatives, Pakistan is poised to become an exporter of beer.
The Guardian (UK) - Young people want more protection from alcohol advertising, survey says
Most young people would like more protection from alcohol advertising, but under-18s do not recognise that drink logos on football shirts are a form of marketing, according to a survey.
ABC Online (Australia) - Alcohol-free homes to be declared to reduce violence
Authorities are hoping the ability to declare any house in Western Australia an alcohol-free zone will lead to a reduction in domestic violence.
Bend Bulletin - Drinking studies show increase
An analysis of 31 studies on alcohol drinking patterns worldwide has found that people born in North America after World War II are more likely than other groups to engage in binge drinking and develop alcoholism. Younger groups consistently consume more alcohol than older generations.
7thSpace Interactive (Hong Kong) - Action plan launched to reduce alcohol-related harm in Hong Kong
An action plan was officially launched today (October 24) to reduce alcohol-related harm, combat the rising tide of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and enhance the quality of life for the community.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Alcohol News - 42/2011


The Press Association (UK) - Experts make alcohol limits appeal
The "tide of harm" seen in Britain's hospitals means it is vital that levels are not increased, said Professor Sir Ian Gilmore, Royal College of Physicians special adviser on alcohol, and chairman of Alcohol Health Alliance UK.
Daily Mail (UK) - 'Irresponsible' Asda is selling beer for LESS THAN 50p a bottle
Bottles of lager are being sold for less than 50p each as the supermarket price  war blows retailer promises to tackle binge drinking  out of the water.
The Voice of Russia (Russia) - Chechen leader calls for alcohol prohibition in Russia
President of Russia’s Chechen republic Ramzan Kadyrov has called for alcohol prohibition in Russia. Russia’s public health chief Gennady Onishchenko backed the idea but said that it was “unachievable.” Onishchenko called for the price of a bottle of strong liquor to be increased to $100. Experts doubt the efficiency of both proposals.
Irish Times (Ireland) - Below-cost alcohol sales 'irresponsible'
THE MARKETING of alcohol by some retailers has become “absolutely irresponsible” and its sale at prices far lower than in the past “needs to be addressed”, according to the chief executive of drinks industry-funded organisation Meas (Mature Enjoyment of Alcohol in Society).
Herald Sun (Australia) - Kids can get alcohol for as little as 25c online
VICTORIAN kids are getting drunk on alcohol sachets ordered from overseas websites for as little as 25c a shot.
AFP (Iran) - Drink-driving tests coming to Iran, where alcohol is banned
Iran's traffic police will soon start testing motorists for driving under the influence of alcohol, which has been banned since the 1979 Islamic revolution, the ISNA news agency reported.
Myjoyonline.com (Ghana) - MoH to take action on alcohol abuse
The Ministry of Health (MoH) is developing a policy to regulate the production, distribution, marketing and consumption of alcohol in the country, following the growing incidence of alcohol.
Daily News & Analysis - Heavy, moderate drinkers at increased injury risk
Alcohol consumption greatly increases risk for serious injury among heavy and moderate drinkers, according to new research.
The Atlantic (USA) - Vodka-Soaked Gummy Bears: The Newest Teen Drinking 'Trend'
The Drudge Report linked today to a Washington D.C. radio station's report that teens have found an alarming new way to ingest their alcohol: sweet, innocent gummy bears.
BusinessWeek (Turkey) - Turkey Raises Taxes on Mobile Phones, Alcohol, Tobacco, Cars
Turkey raised the tax it levies on alcoholic drinks, tobacco products, mobile phones and cars through a special consumption tax.
Cordis News (Sweden/UK) - Alcohol and violence in the media - what does your child think?
Researchers from the United Kingdom and Sweden are taking part in a unique EU-funded project analysing fictional media representations of alcohol and alcohol-related violence; the aim is to understand youth drinking culture.
The Prospector - Alcohol and sex: a dangerous cocktail
Picture this: you're a college student that meets someone at the library, the student lounge or perhaps in class. You've exchanged phone numbers, become friends on Facebook and later you meet at a bar to hang out. One drink leads to another, then another and things may become hot and heavy.
EurekAlert - Genetically influenced responses to alcohol affect brain activation both with and without alcohol
A low level of response (LR) to alcohol is a genetically influenced characteristic, or phenotype, that reflects at least in part a low brain response to alcohol, and carries significant risk for the later development of alcoholism. This study addressed the physiological underpinnings of a low and high LR, finding significant differences in brain activation during a cognitive task, possibly reflecting differences in the amount of brain activity used to deal with a cognitive challenge.
gulfnews.com (Dubai) - Hotels to be involved in cutting road crashes caused by alcohol
Hotels will have a role to play in reducing the alarmingly increasing road fatalities caused by driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), Dubai Police's Traffic Department has said.
STV Local (Scotland) - MSP warns of rising danger from alcohol consumption
People in Moray are being challenged to question their behaviour and attitudes towards alcohol. The call comes from MSP Richard Lochhead, who is highlighting figures on alcohol consumption that shows a 3% increase in alcohol related deaths in Scotland, with drink sales 23% higher throughout the nation.
EurekAlert (Baltics/Italy) - Link between alcohol and harm is stronger in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Sweden than in Italy
Research clearly shows a dose-response relationship between alcohol and health issues such as cirrhosis of the liver. More recent research has shown linkages between greater drinking and greater problems such as interpersonal violence. A study of the impact that the larger, cultural context of drinking in several European countries may have on the relationship between drinking and harm has found that this relationship is stronger in the Baltic countries and Sweden than Italy.
Reuters - 'Youth in Europe' drug prevention programme sees youth drinking drop from 42% to 9%
The Youth in Europe (YIE) drug prevention programme has released research tracking the incidence of smoking (daily), drinking and cannabis experimentation amongst 15 to 16-year-old students in Iceland from 1998 to 2011. And the results are astonishing.
The Local.se (Sweden/Germany) - From Sweden to Germany in search of cheap booze
Tired of Sweden's high alcohol taxes and the state run liquor monopoly? Come along with contributor Patrick Reilly as he details a recent journey to Germany in search of cheap beer.
Physorg (EU) - Time for action: EU reacts to UN Summit on Non-Communicable Diseases
The MEP Heart Group, co-chaired by Ms. Linda McAvan MEP (S&D, UK) and Mr. Cristian Silviu MEP (ALDE, RO), meets today in Brussels with an agenda focused on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs). 'Learning from the UN Summit on Non-Communicable Diseases', is an essential meeting for Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) to exchange with Commissioner for Health and Consumer Affairs, Mr. John Dalli, and Dr. Roberto Bertollini, Chief Scientist and World Health Organization (WHO) Representative to the EU, on the outcomes of the UN High-Level Summit on NCDs.
WalesOnline (Wales) - Wales must consider alcohol advertising ban to beat binge drinking problem, says minister
MORE restrictions on alcohol advertising - and even a ban - are needed if Wales is to win its fight against excessive drinking, Health Minister Lesley Griffiths said today.
National Institutes of Health (USA) - NIH releases clinician's guide for screening underage drinkers
Based on just two questions from a newly released guide, health care professionals could spot children and teenagers at risk for alcohol-related problems. Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention for Youth: A Practitioner's Guide, is now available from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health.
DigitalJournal.com - Study: Bad economy equals more drinking
Previous studies have found that health improved during economic downturns, possibly because unemployment meant fewer funds available for behaviors that could harm health, like excessive drinking. But new research has suggested the opposite may be true.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Alcohol policy making in Europe

The Alcohol Policy Network in Europe (APN) organized its meeting this year in conjunction with the Medusa Experts Conference (part of Poland’s EU Presidency Program) in Poznan, Poland 10 October 2011.

APN emerged out of 2 EC sponsored Europe wide research Projects Bridging the Gap and Building Capacity. The network has currently some 100 members working in the field of alcohol policy making in governmental offices or in non-governmental agencies throughout Europe.

There was a number of very high quality presentations on current dominant themes such as local community action, pricing and young people with keynotes presented by Sven Adreasson, Ann Hope and Evelyn Gillan.
“Communities can be stimulated to develop alcohol prevention – but most health promotion programs in use have little impact on harm,” said Sven Andreasson, professor of the National Institute of Public Health in Stockholm. “Policies that reduce the availability of alcohol on the other hand are effective but require active advocacy efforts.”

Monday, October 10, 2011

Alcohol News - 41/2011


Helsingin Sanomat (Finland) - Study shows the difficulties of comparing homicide statistics
In Finland homicides are committed by drunks, in Holland by criminals; just 6% of Finland’s homicides relate to criminal activities.
abc7.com (Sweden) - Children of alcoholics more likely to drink
A new study out of Sweden found that children of alcoholics are more likely to drink when they get older.
The Foreigner (Norway) - Scotland looks to Norway alcohol policy
The amount of alcohol drunk in Scotland compared to England and Wales is the highest in 17 years. In an effort to combat the problem, Scotland is now considering the Norwegian model, reports say.
Public Finance (Scotland) - Scotland calls for devolution of alcohol duties
Scottish ministers have set out their case for alcohol excise duty to be devolved, arguing that it would give Holyrood more money to meet the costs of excess alcohol consumption in Scotland.
Reuters - Drunk on Facebook? That could be a problem
College students' Facebook pages might hold clues to which of them are at risk for alcohol dependence and abuse, according to a new study.
Sydney Morning Herald (Australia) - Scipione slams 'drink until you drop' culture
NSW needs to debate the manner in which alcohol is advertised and marketed to ensure children and teenagers are not getting the wrong message about drinking according to the Police Commissioner, Andrew Scipione.
Doctors Lounge (USA) - Alcohol-Impaired Driving Down by 30 Percent in U.S.
U.S. adults drive after drinking "a bit too much" about a third less often than they did in 2006; still, about 1.8 percent of adults (four million people) reported alcohol-impaired driving in 2010, according to a report in the Oct. 4 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Sacramento Bee (USA) - Are Alcohol Anklets the New Ignition Interlock?
When "Laura's Law" was signed by Governor Bev Perdue in June, North Carolina became the 8th state in the last year to pass progressive DUI legislation that is substantially shifting the focus of DUI laws from penalizing cars to required—and enforced—sobriety for the most dangerous drivers on the road.
BBC News (UK) - Alcohol limits advice 'confusing'
The advice on alcohol limits is too confusing according to Debbie Bannigan, head of the charity Swanswell. She says that 'units' mean nothing to many people - and the guidance should be clearer and easier to remember.
Radio Netherlands (Netherlands) - Alcohol lock for Dutch drink drivers
From 1 December Dutch drivers caught with a blood alcohol content of more than 0.13 percent will have an ignition lock fitted to their cars.
National Institutes of Health (USA) - NIH study finds doctors miss many alcohol screening opportunities
Physicians often fail to counsel their young adult patients about excessive alcohol use, according to a study led by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health.
Irish Health (Ireland) - Talks on alcohol and mental health
To mark World Mental Health Day, which takes place tomorrow, the College of Psychiatry is hosting two free public events on the relationship between alcohol and mental health.
Reuters (USA) - Local program cuts youth drinking, violence: study
A program that helps communities identify and target health risks in young people led to fewer teens drinking, smoking and being delinquent, according to a new report.
Hurriyet Daily News (Turkey) - Import rules on alcohol amended
Certain imported alcoholic drinks will only enter Turkey through administrative units at specific customs points, according to a new regulation from the food and trade ministries.
The Age (Australia) - Law puts brake on child drinking
A NEW law banning adults from supplying alcohol to children in a private home without their parents' consent will reduce risky drinking when it comes into effect next month, experts say.
Trend News Agency (Kyrgyzstan) - Kyrgyzstan restricts import of soft drinks
The Kyrgyz government has suspended the issuance of permissions to import low-alcohol content drinks, 24.kg news agency reported.
PR Newswire - Big Alcohol Drunk With Power
Industry watchdog Alcohol Justice, formerly Marin Institute, released a new report today that chronicles an obscene outlay of Big Alcohol dollars to California legislators in 2010.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Alcohol News - 40/2011


BBN (Estonia) - Government approves alcohol-tax increase from January
Estonia’s government agreed to raise alcohol taxes from January in spite of having pledged in May that it would not raise the alcohol excise in 2012.
The Local.se (Sweden) - Drunken Swedes choose knives to kill: study
The average murderer in Sweden and neighbouring Finland are drunk men armed with knives who kill on the spur of the moment, according to a new study.
Helsingin Sanomat (Finland) - Children and young adults express displeasure over parents' drinking habits
The drinking habits of parents, or more specifically the drinking problems of parents, become most unpleasant in the eyes of their offspring when they lead to reneging on what has previously been agreed and promised.
IceNews (Denmark) - WHO calls for Denmark drinking age hike
The World Health Organisation has warned the new Danish government that it should take steps to reduce the amount of alcohol being consumed by teenagers.
The impact of small changes in bar closing hours on violence. The Norwegian experience from 18 cities
The Norwegian Institute for Alcohol and Drug Research presents findings and conclusions from research on the relation between bar closing hours and violence.
BBC News (Scotland) - Online loopholes in Scottish alcohol bill
Online deals are being used to get round new laws banning discounted promotions on alcohol in Scotland.
BBC News - What damage does alcohol do to our bodies?
We know that drinking too much alcohol is bad for us. It gives us hangovers, makes us feel tired and does little for our appearance - and that is just the morning afterwards.
The Economist (Africa) - Keep on walking
THE Q bar in the Westlands district of Nairobi is the sort of place that makes marketers salivate. A few pool tables, a few flat-screen televisions (not all tuned to English football), some prostitutes, but not enough to scare off girlfriends, the bottles tidily arranged behind the bar, a soft gangsta soundtrack, and a crowd full of wage-earning 20-something men.
The Canberra Times (Australia) - Call to end watering-down alcohol prices
Cheap wines selling for less than a bottle of water would increase to $7 or $8 under a plan by health groups to tax alcoholic drinks by strength and volume.
Belfast Telegraph (UK) - Cut drink-drive limit even further: charity
Environment Minister Alex Attwood has been urged to adopt a “zero tolerance” policy to drink-driving by significantly slashing the blood alcohol limit for all drivers.
Sudan Tribune (Sudan) - Sale of alcohol to minors widespread in South Sudan – report
An internal report from South Sudan ministry of gender,child and social welfare seen by Sudan Tribune on Saturday said that children under the legal limit of 18 are involved in the sale and widespread consumption of alcohol.
MarketWatch (Canada) - National Report Sheds Light on Student Alcohol and Drug Use
Authors of a new report released today on alcohol and drug use by high school students across Canada raise concern about the prevalence of alcohol and cannabis use among senior high school students (grades 10-12). Specifically, they highlight the percentage of 12th graders who report drinking to excess, using cannabis daily, and/or driving after drinking or using cannabis.
New York Times - Risks: Alcohol Deaths and the Solo Life
Researchers at the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health studied deaths before and after a reduction in the price of alcohol in Finland, and tracked the fatalities attributable to alcohol abuse — liver disease, alcohol poisoning, alcohol-related violence or accidents, among others. The results appear in the September issue of PLoS Medicine.
Independent Online (South Africa) - Foetal alcohol syndrome is on the rise, says study
FOETAL alcohol syndrome is ravaging Western Cape farming communities, with hundreds of children affected, research has found.
News24 (South Africa) - Ad industry unites against booze ban
Members of the advertising industry have come together in an effort to prevent the government's proposed ban on alcohol advertising, it emerged on Friday.
Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (Ghana) - Feminine Face Of Alcohol In Ghana
It’s all common to find our women dancing, exposing part of their body, and singing all in the name of alcohol. For the past one decade in the history of Ghana, our country has witnessed the proliferation of alcohol products with major advertisement in either a huge bill board in town or ads on our major television stations.
Nigerian Tribune (Nigeria) - Why alcohol is deadlier than cocaine, heroin
Illegal substances such as heroin, cocaine, marijauna and the like are considered by many people as deadly forms of recreation, not knowing that alcohol may be just as deadly as hard drugs or even worse.
Irish Times (Ireland) - Radical steps urged to tackle drink abuse
GOVERNMENT PLANS to put alcohol abuse alongside drug abuse have been welcomed by leading activists in the treatment of addiction problems.
Zee News - Booze hits body’s ability to ward off viral infections
Alcohol changes the anti-viral and inflammatory functions of monocytes. “Alcohol has a profound effect of inhibiting IFN production in monocytes regardless of whether the danger signal is intracellular (TLR8) or surface-derived (TLR4). Such a reduction would impair the body’s ability to fight off infection,” Prof Szabo said.
Malta Independent Online (EU) - MEPs propose alcohol ban for newly-licensed drivers
Newly qualified motorists in Europe should not be allowed to drink any alcohol before driving until they have held a full licence for two years, European parliamentarians proposed this week.
Reuters (EU) - New drivers should stay dry, EU lawmakers say
Newly qualified motorists in Europe should not be allowed to drink any alcohol before driving until two years after they have passed their test, EU lawmakers proposed on Tuesday.
Pharmaceutical Processing (USA) - Health Officials Eye Measures to Curb Harmful Use of Alcohol
Top health officials from North, Central and South America and the Caribbean have endorsed a series of actions that the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) says could significantly reduce the public health impact of alcohol.
Fiji Times (Fiji) - Scale up action to control alcohol and tobacco use
World Health Organisation South Pacific officer in charge Steve Iddings said non-communicable diseases were claiming victims at increasingly younger ages, even during childhood, depriving many people of their most productive years.

FASD News - 40/2011


NEWS and ARTICLES
The Stir - Pregnancy Helped Save Me From Alcohol
For many years of my adult life, I abused alcohol. I don't talk about this very often, but I've been pretty up front about it—at least, as much as I can bear to be. As a result, people sometimes ask me how I managed to stop drinking. I wish I had an easy answer for them, or maybe even something uplifting about doing a personal inventory and finding inner strength and accepting help from others ... but really, the answer is this: I got pregnant.
The Hindu - Better safe than sorry
That's as the popular saying goes and is very relevant for mothers-to-be. There is a precious life growing inside you that is dependent on you for its very existence. Taking care of yourself in body and mind for nine months should be your number one priority to raise a healthy baby and give it the best possible start in life.
BBC News - What damage does alcohol do to our bodies?
We know that drinking too much alcohol is bad for us. It gives us hangovers, makes us feel tired and does little for our appearance - and that is just the morning afterwards.
West Virginia MetroNews (USA) - Study: Many Pregnant Women Test Positive for Drugs
Concerned about the number of babies born addicted to drugs, the staff at CAMC's Women's Medicine Center for Prenatal Care decided to take a closer look at the problem.
Helsingin Sanomat (Finland) - Hundreds of Finnish newborn babies damaged by alcohol
Hundreds, and possibly thousands of children in Finland are born each year suffering from the ill effects caused by alcohol consumed by the mother during pregnancy. According to Research Professor Ilona Autti-Rämö of the Social Insurance Institution KELA, the problem is getting worse.
Northern Advocate (New Zealand) - Northland women warned not to drink while pregnant
Pregnant women from around Northland took to the streets to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking during pregnancy. Several events were held in Whangarei, Kerikeri, Kaitaia, Kaikohe and the Hokianga to mark International Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Day last week.
Marketing Week (UK) - Halewood targets pregnant women in wine push
Drinks maker Halewood International is targeting pregnant women in a push for alcohol free wine brand Eisberg that aims to “demystify” the “contradictory” advice given to women during pregnancy.
Offlicence News (UK) - Pregnant women targeted in Eisberg campaign
Alcohol-free wine Eisberg has launched a campaign aimed at pregnant women. The campaign aims to “help demystify the contradicting information and advice given to women in the early stages of pregnancy and offer a healthy alternative to drinking alcohol”.
Victoria Times Colonist (Canada) - FASD's terrible toll can be curbed
The editorial pointed out the harms that face our society related to alcohol use as B.C. and Vancouver Island face increased consumption. One consequence not mentioned in the article is fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Every year, approximately 3,000 infants are born in Canada with FASD.
The Daily Telegraph (UK) - Poison for a baby's brain, foetal alcohol syndrome
THE first ever motion recognising foetal alcohol syndrome was passed in parliament last week, with the condition the leading cause of non-genetic disability in children.
Winnipeg Free Press (Canada) - Gerrard vows to track children with FASD
It costs Canadians at least $5.3 billion, affects at least 11,000 Manitobans and clogs jails, welfare rolls and the health-care system. But fetal alcohol spectrum disorder earned barely a mention on the campaign trail until Wednesday -- Day 25 -- when Liberal Leader Jon Gerrard promised to track and count kids with the disability.
BCLocalNews - What it's like to live with FASD
During the Sept. 9 Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day in 100 Mile House, Shirlana Vance read out the following speech that she had prepared for the occasion.

MATERIALS
CAMH – Addiction Toolkit: Alcohol Use in Pregnancy
The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) has an on-line toolkit for health care providers who work in a primary care setting and who have patients with substance use problems. The have recently added two new sections on Alcohol problems in women and Alcohol use in pregnancy.
Call for Papers - Special Issue on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders
The International Journal of Alcohol and Drug Research, a peer-reviewed, free-of-charge, open access journal and the official Journal of the Kettil Bruun Society for Social and Epidemiological Research on Alcohol (KBS), invites the submission of papers on biomedical, psychological, and sociological aspects related to Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), to be featured in this special issue to be published in December, 2012.
Parenting with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
This paper focuses on issues associated with parenting and living with FASD. It is based on a larger research and video production project that examined the challenges, accomplishments and support needs of adults with FASD in relation to parenting, employment and the legal system.
Review of: "FASD Relationships - What I Have Learned from About Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder"
Rod Densmore is both a medical practitioner and a parent of a young adult with FASD. He addresses the complex issues of FASD as a parent and medical professional in an user-friendly language book and also available as a 5-DVD set.

RESEARCH
Alcoholism - A Limited Access Mouse Model of Prenatal Alcohol Exposure that Produces Long-Lasting Deficits in Hippocampal-Dependent Learning and Memory
It has been estimated that approximately 12% of women consume alcohol at some time during their pregnancy, and as many as 5% of children born in the United States are impacted by prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE). The range of physical, behavioral, emotional, and social dysfunctions that are associated with PAE are collectively termed fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD).
Neuroprotective effects of the 17β-estradiol against ethanol-induced neurotoxicity and oxidative stress in the developing male rat cerebellum: Biochem
During particular periods of central nervous system (CNS) development, exposure to ethanol can decrease regional brain growth and can result in selective loss of neurons. Unfortunately, there are few effective means of attenuating damage in the immature brain.

UPCOMING EVENTS:
Medusa meeting – The agenda for the expert conference (October 11-12, 2011) will cover recent advances in the alcohol related issues including such important topic as: health consequences of alcohol use, FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome), epidemiology, alcohol policy.