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Special Feature – No. 37
Alcohol, Liver Disease Burden, and Paradigm Shift to Prevention
Key Findings from the new EASL-Lancet Liver Commission
The EASL-Lancet Liver Commission has published its landmark report on liver disease in Europe and calls for a paradigm shift in the liver disease response in Europe: prevention and early detection, not end-stage treatment of complications.
Liver disease is now the second leading cause of years of working life lost in Europe. The Liver Commission clearly addresses the major contribution of alcohol to Europe’s liver disease burden. And the Liver Commission issues a strong call for European governments to introduce uniform alcohol policy solutions to prevent and reduce alcohol harm, including a complete ban of alcohol advertising, sponsorship, and promotion – also in social and digital media.
Liver disease is often one of the first types of alcohol harms that comes to mind. The causal link between alcohol and liver damage is well proven. During the pandemic, many countries are facing skyrocketing liver disease cases and deaths due to alcohol, including alcoholic hepatitis and rising need for liver transplants.
But alcohol policy solutions are available and implementation of the alcohol policy best buy solutions has a near immediate effect on reducing the liver disease burden.
The Alcohol Issues Podcast
How the Alcohol Industry Misrepresents the Truth About Alcohol and Cardiovascular Health
Alcohol’s harm on cardiovascular health is arguably the area where scientific knowledge and public awareness have progressed most slowly in the last decade. In addition to inaction, the myth of alcohol’s benefits for cardiovascular health persists. And in policy making processes this misunderstanding is a critical impediment to accelerating action on alcohol as public health priority. But this is changing.
In this episode of the Alcohol Issues Podcast host Maik Dünnbier welcomes Mark Petticrew and May van Schalkwyk to explore why change is needed and how it can be further accelerated.
- Mark is Professor of Public Health Evaluation in the Department of Social and Environmental Health Research at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He is Director of the NIHR Public Health Research Unit.
- May is Specialist Registrar in Public Health and (NIHR) National Institute for Health Research Doctoral Research Fellow at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, researching the commercial determinants of health.