Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Head To Head

Could campaigns like Dry January do more harm than good?

BMJ 2016; 352 doi: (Published 13 January 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;352:i143

Rapid Response:

Re: Could campaigns like Dry January do more harm than good?

Professor Sir Ian Gilmore is a widely respected clinician but in the interests of transparency should not his role as Chair of Alcohol Health Alliance UK also be declared on his authorship of this head to head?

The Alcohol Health Alliance brings together more than 40 organisations (including the BMA) that have a shared interest in reducing the damage caused to health by alcohol but I doubt that all BMA members would share every one of its top ten policy recommendations.

These include a) that at least one-third of every alcohol product label should be given over to an evidence-based health warning specified by an independent regulatory body and b) that the sale of alcohol in shops should be restricted to specific times of the day and designated areas and c) that alcohol advertising should only be permitted in newspapers and other adult press and its content should be limited to factual information about brand, provenance and product strength.

Nanny state?

Competing interests: No competing interests

19 January 2016
James A Heathcote
South View Lodge, Bromley, Kent