Alcoholic Drinks: Breast Cancer

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 13th June 2022.

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Photo of Kenny MacAskill Kenny MacAskill Alba, East Lothian

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has taken to (a) improve awareness of the association between alcohol consumption and breast cancer development and (b) reduce alcohol consumption rates in populations at higher risk of breast cancer.

Photo of Maggie Throup Maggie Throup The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The United Kingdom Chief Medical Officers’ low risk drinking guidelines highlight that the risk of developing a range of health problems, including breast cancer, is increased by greater alcohol consumption. We continue to promote these guidelines through public health messaging, including the ‘Better Health’ campaign and the Drink Free Days app.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends that National Health Service professionals should routinely carry out alcohol screening as an integral part of practice, particularly focusing on groups which may be at an increased risk of harm from alcohol and those with an alcohol-related condition. Local authorities are responsible for the provision of high-quality services to prevent, mitigate and treat alcohol-related health harm. These include identification of those at risk, advice and an alcohol risk assessment in the NHS Health Check.

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