Effectiveness Of Raising The Minimum Drinking Age

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INTRODUCTION Alcohol is a popular product that has permeated global markets and dominated Australia’s social and cultural spheres. The use of Alcohol transcends both time and geographical barriers, with historical accounts portraying vivid scenes of alcohol consumption to mark momentous occasions or the medium for misbehaviour. A phenomenon of adolescents drinking to intoxication has been observed in recent years. In order to understand the present situation it is vital to consider the social and historical context of Alcohol consumption globally. In Australia a harm minimisation strategy has been adopted, with the three core pillars being harm reduction, supply reduction and demand reduction. Throughout history there have been…show more content…
International statistics reveal that Alcohol is attributed to 4% of total mortality and between 4- 5% of DALY’s (1, 2). Rhem et al notes that more than 25% of the global consumption is estimated to be unrecorded, due to lack of surveillance. This variance can create a higher global burden of disease attributable to Alcohol (2). According to the World Health Organisation (2014), overconsumption of Alcohol has been linked to the development of more than 200 diseases, making it the third highest risk leading to death and disability (1). Rhem et al conducted an analysis of the burden of disease attributable to Alcohol. In particular their analysis revealed that the pattern of drinking, volume and quality of alcohol consumed were causally linked to cancer, cardiovascular diseases, liver cirrhosis and injury (2). The study also elucidates the notion that even with evidence based management strategies and widespread acceptance of the harms associated with the drug, Alcohol misuse is a significant issue in society. The net harms outweigh any notable benefits of Alcohol over consumption. Globally there is no consensus on a legal minimum age, and socio-cultural factors play an integral role in determining this factor. The latest World Health Organisation Alcohol report (2014) has revealed that 115 countries have declared 18 years as the legal purchase age. Seven Countries are set at 20 years, whilst 14 countries are towards the higher end, at 21 years; these laws
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