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Patient Intell. 2011 May 12;2011(3):29-38.

Effectiveness of public health programs for decreasing alcohol consumption.

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  • 1William F Connell School of Nursing, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA, USA.


Excessive alcohol consumption and the associated negative consequences are a major public health concern in the United States and throughout the world. Historically, there have been numerous attempts to develop policies and prevention programs aimed at decreasing high-risk alcohol use. Policy initiatives have demonstrated considerable effectiveness and include changes in the minimum legal drinking age, reductions in acceptable legal limits for blood alcohol concentration while operating a motor vehicle, as well as decreasing availability and access to alcohol for underage individuals. Primary prevention programs that have used exclusively educational approaches have received mixed results. Increasing effectiveness has been associated with prevention programs that have utilized a multi-component approach and have included educational initiatives with environmental changes.

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