The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4096.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - 1:42 PM

Abstract #46335

Prevention research and alcohol policies: Opportunities for synergy

Norman A. Giesbrecht, PhD, Center for Policy Analysis & Training, Pacific Institute for Research & Evaluation, 11710 Beltsville Drive, Suite 300, Calverton, MD 20705-3102, 301 755-2774,

The best prevention initiatives reduce major drinking-related problems among those who are at greatest risk of these problems, and offer sustained impact in a cost-effective manner. However, epidemiological and evaluation literature indicates that relatively few interventions either approach or meet these criteria. Those which hold promise tend to be in the alcohol policy, community action and law enforcement arenas involving strategies which focus on the population or on the distribution, selling, or drinking environments, rather than on the individual. Controlling access to alcohol, enforcing or modifying laws pertaining to distribution or sales, or mobilizing communities to take charge of alcohol issues are promising initiatives. Nevertheless, significant human resources and attention continue to be devoted to interventions or policies of unproven or equivocal impact. Several factors contributing to the resilience of ineffective prevention interventions: for example, faulty assumptions or narrow conceptual foci; inadequate structures or organizations; absence of a comprehensive system-oriented perspective; and vested interests tied to procedures at the expense of outcomes. The presentation explores opportunities for synergy between prevention research and alcohol policy. It outlines options for locating, translating and disseminating policy successes in ways that encourage other communities to give greater attention to those initiatives with a high potential for reducing drinking-related problems.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Public Health Policy, Alcohol Problems

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Reducing Alcohol-Related Harm through Evidence-Based Policies

The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA