Alcoholism and rising mortality in the Russian FederationBMJ 1995; 310 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.310.6995.1668c (Published 24 June 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;310:1668
- Martin McKee,
- Laurent Chenet
- Senior lecturer Research fellow Department of Public Health and Policy, Health Services Research Unit, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London WC1E 7HT
EDITOR,—Michael Ryan's article1 and the press coverage that followed it highlight how little is known in the West about the human tragedy currently unfolding in Russia. Although the non-Islamic republics of the former Soviet Union have a long tradition of high alcohol consumption, until recently epidemiological research on it was suppressed as this was the reponsibility of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.2 This latter factor may explain the remarkable absence of references to alcohol in major Western reports on health in the former Soviet Union.
Ryan notes …