The Federal Budget released today shows the Government is taking positive steps to address the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) rates in Australia.
Investing in FASD prevention shows the Government is committed to lowering the FASD rates to improve quality of life for the next generation. A national register would go a long way to further supporting this initiative.
“FASD is a life sentence for those born with it – there is no cure,” said National Alliance for Action on Alcohol (NAAA) co-chair and Chair of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons Trauma Committee Dr John Crozier.
“FASD devastates families and communities. It can have major impacts on children’s intellectual ability and behaviours, putting pressure on health care services,” said Dr Crozier.
“This initiative is aimed at three key aspects of FASD: clinician education, prevention and research. This support is key to prevent FASD by empowering women with the right information to make educated decisions about the risks of drinking alcohol while pregnant,” says Dr Crozier.
“The clinical network and information resources that will be made available to clinicians are an important step in improving patient outcomes and helping clinicians better understand how FASD affects their patients,” Dr Crozier said.
“Allocation of funds in tonight’s budget is an important step in the right direction, but it won’t solve the FASD problem in Australia,” said Dr Crozier.
NAAA calls on the Government to establish and fund a central register of people diagnosed with fetal alcohol, similar to the Australian Cerebral Palsy Register. Action should also include comprehensive steps to reduce harmful drinking throughout the community.
Alcohol related items in the Federal Budget will be reviewed over the coming week by NAAA.
TO ARRANGE AN INTERVIEW WITH DR JOHN CROZIER PLEASE CONTACT:
Amy Kimber – 0437 144 050
For pdf of media release: 160503 Hope for the next generation