WA tackles problem drinking with community campaign

By Melissa Coade

Wednesday October 20, 2021

Roger Cook
WA minister for health Roger Cook. (AAP Image/Richard Wainwright)

A $1.18 million campaign will be piloted in Western Australia with a view to reducing alcohol abuse by at least 10%.

The digital and television campaign called Alcohol. Think Again will be run by the WA mental health commission in partnership with the government agency Healthway for three years. 

In a statement announcing the funding on Tuesday, minister for health Roger Cook said that the campaign was designed to raise awareness about the serious health risks associated with the overconsumption of alcohol.

“This new million-dollar Healthway funding will enable the campaign to extend its reach to high-risk populations,” Cook said. 

“The campaign will help provide adults with the skills and confidence they need to reduce their alcohol use, building on the success we’ve seen so far.”

Investment in the program will also go towards conducting a comprehensive evaluation of Alcohol. Think Again. 

According to mental health minister Stephen Dawson, about one third of Western Australians aged 16-44 consumed alcohol at levels that were considered to be high risk for long-term harm. He said that through targeted education, the government was attempting to empower people to create healthier lives for themselves and curb the negative impacts of alcohol on the community. 

“This new element of the Alcohol. Think Again campaign, scheduled for early next year, will build on the current advertising campaign, with specific messaging to increase knowledge about how to reduce alcohol use,” Dawson said. 

By 2024 the state government hopes that the campaign will have driven down rates of ‘risky’ alcohol consumption by at least 10%, as has been recommended by its sustainable health review released in 2017.

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