Target 3.5 Prevention and treatment of consumption of psychoactive substances



Mandates and strategies

  •  This document provides evidence for arguments supporting alcohol marketing regulation, and suggests key elements that can be considered by countries in planning, developing, implementing, and evaluating effective regulation. It also provides legislative language that can assist governments in developing or modifying existing laws and implementing monitoring mechanisms. 
  • PAHO Regional Meeting on Alcohol, Drugs, and Driving. (Washington, DC. 5-7 May 2016 In response to this call for action, PAHO organized a technical meeting with researchers from various countries in the Americas, and WHO and PAHO staff, to 1) review research on drink- and drug-driving carried out in the Americas (particularly LAC countries), and determine research gaps; 2) discuss the types of studies that could be carried out in LAC countries in future; and 3) review the feasibility of undertaking one or more studies using a common protocol.
  •  In 2010, the Sixty-third World Health Assembly endorsed the Global Strategy to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol (Resolution WHA63.13) (1). To facilitate implementation of the Global Strategy, in 2011 the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) adopted the Plan of Action to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol (Resolution CD51.R14) (2). The purpose of the present document is to report on progress made in the implementation of the Plan of Action, five years after its adoption.
  •  In 2010, the 50th Directing Council adopted a regional public health strategy to respond to the health problems associated with the use of psychoactive substances in the Americas (Document CD50/18, Rev. 1) (1). The strategy with a public health approach focused on prevention, early intervention, treatment, rehabilitation, social reintegration, health systems management and reduction of adverse consequences of substance use comprises five strategic objectives: (a) development of national policies and resource allocation; (b) promotion of universal prevention; (c) early intervention, care and treatment systems; (d) research, monitoring, and evaluation; and (e) development of strategic partnerships. This document presents a regional plan of action for the implementation of the strategy over the next 10 years.

Scientific articles

  • Alcohol consumption and burden of disease in the Americas in 2012: implications for alcohol policy Objective. To describe the volume and patterns of alcohol consumption up to and including 2012, and to estimate the burden of disease attributable to alcohol consumption as measured in deaths and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) lost in the Americas in 2012. Methods. Measures of alcohol consumption were obtained from the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Information System on Alcohol and Health (GISAH). The burden of alcohol consumption was estimated in both deaths and DALYs lost based on mortality data obtained from WHO, using alcohol-attributable fractions. Regional groupings for the Americas were based on the WHO classifications for 2004 (according to child and adult mortality). 
  • Strengthening of regulatory systems for medicines in the Americas (Editorial) Health regulation is regarded as one of public health's basic functions. Effective regulation of medicines promotes and protects the public's health by guaranteeing medicines quality, safety, and efficacy; promoting the adequate manufacture, storage, and distribution of medicines; facilitating the fight against substandard, spurious, falsely labeled, falsified, or counterfeit medical products; providing the necessary information to health professionals and patients so they can use medicines rationally; and ensuring that access to medicines is not hindered by inefficient regulatory frameworks. 

Technical documents

  •  The Mental Health and Substance Use Unit of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), in conjunction with the Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatría Ramón de la Fuente Muñiz, a PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center, produced this publication, which is based on the presentations made in Mexico during the regional workshop on the prevention of suicide. This report was conceived as a practical tool that provides essential information to better understand suicidal behavior and the main strategies to combat it, from registry to the evaluation of interventions, taking into account the approaches already under way in the Region.
  • Regional Status Report on Alcohol and Health in the Americas This Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) report on alcohol and health in the Americas examines the patterns and consequences of alcohol use in the Region and evaluates progress made since the enactment of the Global Strategy and Regional Plan of Action to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol. The report is composed of three sections: 1) consumption of alcohol and resulting harm, comparing historical data from the Americas as well as current data across Regions; 2) policies and interventions, focusing on a few of the ten target areas recommended by the Global Strategy; and 3) recommendations for policymakers in the Region. Wherever possible, this report attempts to explain gender differences in consumption and harm.