Alcohol intake in the WHO European Region is the highest in the world. The harmful use of alcohol is related to premature death and avoidable disease and is a major avoidable risk factor for neuropsychiatric disorders, cardiovascular diseases, cirrhosis of the liver and cancer. It is associated with several infectious diseases and contributes significantly to unintentional and intentional injuries. Further, excessive alcohol use during a woman’s pregnancy can lead to severe mental handicap of her child.WHO/Europe's alcohol policy framework
Top storyWHO helps EU Member States enhance surveillance of alcohol consumption and harm
WHO has developed a series of measures and instruments to support Member States in their efforts to enhance alcohol surveillance and improve the national processes for estimating alcohol consumption and the burden of alcohol-attributable disease.
- New WHO study shows more action needed to monitor and limit digital marketing of unhealthy products to children
- New WHO factsheets reveal Europe struggles to implement policies to reduce alcohol consumption
- Every day, about 800 people in Europe die from alcohol-attributable causes
PublicationsAdolescent alcohol-related behaviours: trends and inequalities in the WHO European Region, 2002–2014 (2018) More publications
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Policy resourceEuropean action plan to reduce the harmful use of alcohol 2012–2020
The European action plan to reduce the harmful use of alcohol 2012–2020 includes a range of evidence-based policy options to reduce the harmful use of alcohol.
Data and statistics
1 in 5 people
Aged 15 years+ report heavy episodic drinking (5 or more drinks on an occasion, or 60g alcohol) at least once a week.
More data and statistics