Committee recommends warnings on alcoholic drinks

ALCOHOLIC drinks may soon have to warn women against consuming them if pregnant.

It was one of the recommendations made to the Australian Government in its report on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders.

FASD is a potential consequence of consuming booze while expecting.

A child born with FASD will have a smaller head and brain defects that lead to behavioural, language, speech, vision or hearing problems.

The committee working on the report are pushing for a national plan of action against FASD.

Committee chair Graham Perrett said this was an important health issue that required a united plan of attack.

He said FASD may be preventable but could not be cured.

"The social, emotional and financial costs of FASD to individuals, their families and the community are devastating," he said.

The plan would include forced health warnings on alcoholic drinks and packaging, better tools for diagnosis and the development of an awareness campaign.

The National Brewers Association was quick to dismiss laws regarding on-drink warnings.

Chief executive Denita Wawn said the industry was already preparing to print these notices on most alcoholic drinks.

She said more intervention from doctors and more training for health professionals was the best way to address the risks of FASD.

Topics:  alcohol, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, pregnant



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