The National Alliance for Action on Alcohol (NAAA) has welcomed the findings of a Senate Inquiry, Effective approaches to prevention and diagnosis of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), aimed at protecting the health of Australian women and babies.
NAAA Co-chair Jane Martin said the recommendations handed down by the Senate Community Affairs References earlier this week, particularly those focused on public education around FASD, signalled a key step towards creating a community that supports Australian women to have alcohol free pregnancies.
“Setting a broader strategy for public education around FASD prevention would help raise awareness in the community about the health risks of alcohol exposure in pregnancy, and ensure Australian women are supported to have alcohol free pregnancies by their partners, families and the wider community.”
Alcohol exposure in pregnancy can cause a range of impairments to babies known as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) – a permanent and lifelong disability, as well as miscarriage, stillbirth, premature birth, birth defects and developmental problems.
Ms Martin also commended the Committee for putting the health and wellbeing of Australian children, families and communities ahead of the commercial interests of the alcohol industry by recommending that governments prioritise reform of alcohol marketing, pricing and taxation.
“It’s important all governments come together to implement these key recommendations as part of a comprehensive national strategy to prevent FASD and ensure that all babies born in Australia have the best chance to lead healthy lives and reach their potential.”