Alcohol Use Disorders (81) The role of the alcohol industry (11) Alcohol industry and misinformation (2)

23 February, 2024

Dear HIFA colleagues,


I completed their Drinking Check as if I drank two large (250ml) glasses of wine every day.

Their response was: "Great news! You are at lower risk of alcohol-related problems. This means you are at lower risk of serious diseases such as stroke, heart and liver disease, and seven types of cancer and may already be noticing the benefits of lower risk drinking such as deeper sleep, more energy and brighter moods."

I describe my findings in full here:

Two large glasses of wine every day is seriously heavy drinking. It is the equivalent of 42 units per week, when the UK Government recommends that a person should not drink more than 14 units per week.

I have just done the test again - 2 large glasses of wine per day - and got the same astounding result: "Great news! You are at lower risk of alcohol-related problems."

I find this really shocking, don't you?

To see if this is reported elsewhere, I searched on "Drinkaware encourages heavy drinkers to continue drinking" and I was unable to find anything on the subject.

I learned that DrinkAware prides itself in saying "In 2021, 250,991 people completed the Drinkaware Self-Assessment Tool" and it has 'since been shortlisted for an award in the 2022 European Search Awards' (!)


I invite all HIFA members to try the test yourself:

Please let us know what you entered, and the result. If it corresponds to the result I am getting, we need to bring this to the attention of the media to protect potentially millions of people who are currently being misinformed.

With thanks, Neil

HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of HIFA (Healthcare Information For All), a global health community that brings all stakeholders together around the shared goal of universal access to reliable healthcare information. HIFA has 20,000 members in 180 countries, interacting in four languages and representing all parts of the global evidence ecosystem. HIFA is administered by Global Healthcare Information Network, a UK-based nonprofit in official relations with the World Health Organization. Email: