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A national approach towards addressing Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

Australian researchers have delivered a significant body of evidence to support policy development on the diagnosis, management and prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and the identification of alcohol use in pregnancy.

But while the uptake of research on alcohol use in pregnancy into policy has been noteworthy, FASD expert Professor Elizabeth Elliot says much more still needs to be improved.

“We have a very tolerant attitude to alcohol use in Australia, including at risky levels, and that includes in pregnant women. We know that alcohol can cause harm both at a cellular level and a clinical level therefore the precautionary approach is safest,” said Professor Elliot.

Elizabeth Elliot AM is a Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health at the University of Sydney and co-director of the National Health and Medical Research Centre of Excellence in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Her career has been committed to improving health and quality of life for children through education, research and advocacy.

Along with Professor Carol Bower and Dr James Fitzpatrick, Professor Elliot’s Global Alcohol Policy Conference (GAPC) interactive panel Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: From Research to Policy, examined new ways to strengthen links between research, clinical practice and policy.

The interactive panel engaged commentary from experts in research, clinical care, policy, consumers and NGO’s to identify gaps in evidence and evidence uptake and support a collaborative, strategic, national approach to translating research into policy.

In this short video, filmed at GAPC 2017 in Melbourne, Professor Elliot shares how FASD awareness needs stronger links between research, clinical practice and policy.

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Drink Tank aims to generate meaningful commentary and debate about alcohol policy, and to provide a platform for all members of the Australian community to share their views and concerns.

Our goal is for the Drink Tank community to engage in robust discussion about alcohol, highlighting a broad spectrum of views and voices, and ultimately to raise the profile of alcohol as an issue of national importance.

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