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Alcoholic Drinks: Rehabilitation

Volume 472: debated on Thursday 21 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress has been made on establishing (a) telephone helplines, (b) interactive websites and (c) support groups under the National Alcohol Strategy to assist people who want to drink less. (181681)

A number of resources are already in place:

Drinkline, which is funded by the Department, assists people who want to drink sensibly, providing them with advice over the phone and, if required, signposting them to the appropriate services. Advice is also available from NHS Direct.

Advice on alcohol consumption from several interactive websites:

the new Drinkaware website;

the Know Your Limits campaign site; and

from NHS Choices.

Many local providers have established support groups as one aspect of their broader alcohol harm reduction service.

The forthcoming campaign to raise awareness of units and encourage people to drink within the sensible drinking guidelines is due to launch in May and will strengthen the available support. It will include a website that will provide information designed to help people reduce their drinking and will signpost potentially harmful drinkers to telephone, web and paper-based materials as required.

The Department is conducting social marketing research to identify the best ways to help people to choose healthier lifestyles, including help lines, websites and support groups. New information and advice, targeted towards people who drink at harmful levels, their families and friends, will be available from the summer.