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close this bookAlcohol-related Problems as an Obstacle to the Development of Human Capital (WB)
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentForeword
View the documentAbstract
View the documentIntroduction
Open this folder and view contentsThe nature of alcohol-related problems
Open this folder and view contentsTrends in production and consumption
close this folderLevels and trends in alcohol-related mortality and morbidity
View the documentAlcohol-related mortality
View the documentEvidence from developing countries
Open this folder and view contentsHow much do alcohol-related problems cost?
Open this folder and view contentsRole of government and policy options
View the documentConclusion
View the documentBibliography
View the documentAppendix tables
View the documentDistributors of world bank publications
 

Alcohol-related mortality

The consequences of excessive alcohol consumption are alarming. Of the approximately two million people who died from alcohol-related causes in 1989, 5 percent died in motor vehicle accidents, about half died from cirrhosis of the liver, another 10 percent died of alcohol dependence syndrome and 32 percent died of either cancer of the oesophagus or cancer of the liver (See Table 3).

The use of mortality data (alcohol-related deaths/total deaths) presented in Table 3, underestimates the problem of alcohol abuse, since most of the costs of alcohol abuse arise from nonfatal disease and injury.2 Estimating the impact of these diseases and injuries related to alcohol abuse is complex, and requires surveillance data that are currently inadequate in both developed and developing countries, despite the large social and economic effects of these conditions. It is clear, however, that alcohol abuse creates Increased demand for services in a variety of areas, including, inter alia, direct medical treatment for conditions stemming from alcohol abuse (e.g. physician fees, medication costs, and other health care charges), alcohol-related support services which include increases in program and health insurance administration, research, and medical facilities construction and reduced productivity both in terms of short-term absenteeism and on-the-joh reductions in productivity due to alcohol abuse. The following section, reviews survey evidence on the prevalence of alcohol-related problems in several developing countries.


Figure 8: Age-specific Cirrhosis Mortality Rate France, 1983 and 1989

TABLE 3: Worldwide Deaths Attributable to Alcohol

Cause of Death

Total Deaths

% Alcohol Related

Alcohol-Related Deaths

Selected References

Motor Vehicle Accidents

214,208

50 %

107,104

1

Cancer Oesophagus

805,980

75

604,485

2

Cancer Liver

488,060

15

73,209

3

Alcohol

279,930

100

279,930

4

Dependence Syndrome

       

Cirrhosis

2,094,110

50

1,047,055

5

Total

   

2,11 1,783

 

 

Sources:
(1) Parker, 1987; (2) Rothman, 1980; (3) ibid; (4) By definition; (5) Harwood, 1984; Cruze, et al., 1981; Hyman, 1981.
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