Summary: The report examines the gender dimensions of alcohol consumption, and alcohol-related problems in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region. It finds that alcohol use is one of the major causes of the global disease burden, ranking as the fourth cause of disability among men in less developed countries. It also finds that men bear most of the burden of alcohol-related diseases, and that alcohol plays an important role in instigating unsafe sex practices, and violent behaviors, for example, domestic violence. Moreover, the report shows that men are more likely than women, to drink alcohol heavily, and excessively, and, that drinking norms influence these gender differences in alcohol consumption. As for alcohol policies in the LAC region, the report finds that these focus overwhelmingly on control of availability, and access to alcohol; implementation and enforcement of these policies, however, remain superficial. Finally, the report lays out policy options for LAC countries, ranging from imposing taxes, to putting in place public education campaigns. But it stresses the importance of establishing policies, and programs that consider gender differences in alcohol consumption patterns, and alcohol related problems.
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