Policy options for prevention: The case of alcohol

Traci L. Toomey, Alexander C. Wagenaar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Reducing the availability of alcohol through alcohol control policies such as excise taxes and the minimum legal drinking age has been effective in reducing a wide range of alcohol-related problems, including traffic crashes, liver cirrhosis, and violence. Alcohol control policies may be classified into two overlapping categories-public and institutional policies. Some policies such as alcohol server training may be either mandated by governmental jurisdictions or voluntarily adopted by individual institutions, which include alcohol retail establishments, other businesses, worksites, schools, colleges/universities, law enforcement agencies, religious institutions, insurance agencies, and alcohol producers. Public policies may be mandated by national, state/provincial, or local governments to regulate where, when, and how alcohol is sold and consumed. This paper describes the wide array of public and institutional policies available to reduce alcohol- related problems. Summaries of research evaluating specific alcohol control policies are provided when available.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)192-213
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Public Health Policy
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 19 1999


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