Are Trends in Alcohol Consumption and Cause-Specific Mortality in Russia Between 1990 and 2017 the Result of Alcohol Policy Measures?
The purpose of this study was to analyze trends in alcohol consumption and mortality and their association with alcohol control measures in Russia between 1990 and 2017.
Analysis of trends for all-cause mortality and alcohol-related mortality, life expectancy, and total adult per capita alcohol consumption and their relationship were conducted. A narrative literature review of alcohol control policies since 1990 was done.
Corresponding trends of alcohol consumption and all-cause mortality and cause-specific mortality were observed for the analyzed period. Steep increases in consumption and mortality occurred in 1991–1994 and in 1998–2002, and a continuous decline was observed since 2003. Trends in alcohol consumption were also closely mirrored by trends in life expectancy. These dynamics seem to be affected by economic trends and alcohol control policies, which were increasingly implemented over the observation period, even though some measures remained vague.
A combination of several factors seems to be at play to explain alcohol consumption and mortality trends: the general economic situation, the availability and affordability of alcohol, and the changing patterns of alcohol consumption. Alcohol control measures seem to have had a positive impact on decreasing alcohol consumption and mortality insofar as they have reinforced the existing economic trends.