friends-cheers-with-shot-glasses-in-bar.

Since a few years, NordAN has the ambition to run and regularly update an alcohol policy report covering the Nordic and the Baltic countries. Recently we have also added sections on cannabis use and opioid use to this report.


Our ambition is to provide member associations, and persons working in the field, with data on alcohol and drug use, level of harm related to the use of substances and policy briefings from countries. We thus combine data and figures, extracted from what we consider reliable sources, with country reports on alcohol policy and ongoing debate. The latter are basically provided by member organisations.
 

On this opening page, you find some general overview figures on the situation in different countries. For more details, you can scroll the countries above and the scroll-down menus for different types of information. All countries do not have exactly the same structure of information, but for some domains (eg consumption trends and availability), you can easily get an overview by scrolling across the countries.
 

We welcome feedback on the report, as well as help with updates. This report is a living document, and we are dependent on contact persons in the countries to help us update.

Professor Peter Allebeck, president of Nordic Alcohol and Drug Policy Network (NordAN)

peter-allebeck-webb.jpg

opioids

Nordic Alcohol Policy Report is beginning to broaden its scope by adding chapters also on different drugs. Although the Nordic countries are often seen as ideal in practically every global ranking of quality of life and social equality, the number of drug-related deaths in these countries is among the highest in Europe. Together with Baltic countries. 
Opioids, including heroin, methadone and buprenorphine, account for the majority of fatal overdoses in these countries.
The following page provides a summary of the main comparative data, and more detailed reports can be found from each country report.

Prescription Drugs
2020 UPDATE

The Nordic and Baltic region has been an exciting laboratory for everyone interested in alcohol research and policy. With Nordic countries, we have a long and effective experience with WHO recommended alcohol policies and with that one of the lowest alcohol consumption and harm rates in Europe. Baltic countries, understanding the different situation they are coming from, has had one of the highest consumption rates in Europe and thus also in the world and has also struggled with introducing actual alcohol strategies. Within the last few years, a significant change has taken place, and Lithuania and Estonia have adopted new regulations that are now showing the way to rest of Europe. Latvia is also planning further changes that include stronger alcohol advertising limits etc. 
Various developments push and pull our countries between the interests of public health and different economic benefits. Take a look at our latest "What has happened since" report which shows the policy process in different countries. Again, both positive and some troubling news. 
The NordAN network has focused on 2020 for some years already. Why? Because the WHO Europe's alcohol action plan ends and next steps should be made already. The same situation is on the global level as well.  This February, the 146th session of the WHO Executive Board adopted a resolution on Accelerating action to reduce the harmful use of alcohol.  Director-General was requested to create an action plan for 2022-2030 to implement a Global Strategy to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol. Nothing concrete, but at least there is a plan. And acceleration. 
But as we have seen in our region. These international agreements and papers can, at best help. Local and national political will is what makes a significant difference.

Alcohol consumption levels in Nordic/Baltic countries

# Methods how countries measure alcohol consumption differs. Find more detailed information from each country report.

Alcohol-attributable fractions, road traffic crash deaths in 2016 (%)

The alcohol-attributable fraction (AAF) denotes the proportion of a health outcome which is caused by alcohol (i.e. that proportion which would disappear if alcohol consumption was removed).

Population-attributable fractions are calculated based on the level of exposure to alcohol and the risk relations between consumption and different disease or injury categories. For each disease the exact proportion is different and will depend on the level and patterns of alcohol consumption, and on the relative risks.

Source: WHO Global Health Observatory Data Repository (European Region)

Alcohol-attributable fractions, liver cirrhosis deaths in 2016 (%)
Alcohol-attributable fractions, cancer deaths in 2016 (%)
Alcohol-attributable fractions, all-cause deaths in 2016 (%)
Alcohol dependence (15+), 12 month prevalence (%) in 2016

Adults (15+ years) who are dependent on alcohol (according to ICD.10: F10.2 Alcohol dependence) during a given a calendar year, Numerator: Number of adults (18-65 years) with a diagnosis of F10.2 during a calendar year. Denominator: Midyear resident population (15+ years) over the same calendar year. UN World Population Prospects, medium variant.

Method of estimation:
Using the algorithms specified in the validated instruments, presence or absence of alcohol dependence can be determined. Data on the prevalence of people with alcohol dependence were modelled using regression models. Where available, the original survey data were used instead of the predicted estimates. The regression models used data collected through a systematic search of all survey data (from 2000 onward) and took into account per capita consumption, population structure, the size of Muslim population within the country, the region of the country, and the year from which the survey data were obtained.

Source: WHO Global Health Observatory Data Repository (European Region)

Alcohol use disorders (15+), 12 month prevalence (%) in 2016

It is important to grasp the extent of the health consequences related to the consumption of alcohol in a population. Alcohol use disorders comprise an array of disorders attributable to alcohol and therefore reveal an important proportion of a population which suffers from the direct impact of alcohol.

Adults (15+ years) who suffer from disorders attributable to the consumption of alcohol (according to ICD-10: F10.1 Harmful use of alcohol; F10.2 Alcohol dependence) during a given calendar year. Numerator: Number of adults (15+ years) with a diagnosis of F10.1, F10.2 during a calendar year. Denominator: Midyear resident population (15+ years) over the same calendar year. UN World Population Prospects, medium variant.

Learn more about Method of estimation: WHO Global Health Observatory Data Repository (European Region)

Harmful use (15+), 12 month prevalence (%) in 2016

Using the algorithms specified in the validated instruments, presence of absence of harmful use of alcohol can be determined. Data on the prevalence of people with harmful use of alcohol were modelled using regression models. Where available, the original survey data were used instead of the predicted estimates. The regression models used data collected through a systematic search of all survey data (from 2000 onward) and took into account per capita consumption, population structure, the size of Muslim population within the country, the region of the country, and the year from which the survey data were obtained.

Learn more about Method of estimation: WHO Global Health Observatory Data Repository (European Region)