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HOME > J Prev Med Public Health > Volume 39(1); 2006 > Article
English Abstract Socioeconomic Costs of Alcohol Drinking in Korea.
Woo Jin Chung, Hyun Jun Chun, Sun Mi Lee
Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 2006;39(1):21-29
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1Graduate School of Public Health, Yonsei University, Korea.
2Department of Public Health, Yonsei University Graduate School,

We wanted to estimate the annual socioeconomic costs of alcohol drinking in Korea. METHODS: The costs were classified as direct costs, indirect costs and the other costs. The direct costs consisted of direct medical costs, indirect medical costs and subsidiary medical costs. Particularly, the medical costs and population attributable fraction for disease were considered to reflect the calculation of the direct medical costs. The indirect costs were computed by the extent to which the loss of productivity and loss of the workforce might have occurred due to changes in mortality and morbidity according to alcohol drinking. The other costs consisted of property loss, administration costs and costs of alcoholic beverage. RESULTS: The annual costs, which seemed to be attributable to alcohol drinking, were estimated to be 149,352 hundred million won (2.86% of GDP). In case of the latter, the amount includes 9,091 hundred million won for direct costs (6.09%), 62,845 hundred million won for the reduction and loss of productivity (42.08%), 44,691 hundred million won for loss of the workforce (29.92%), and the other costs (21.91%). CONCLUSIONS: Our study confirms that compared with the cases of Japan (1.9% of GNP) and the other advanced countries (1.00-1.42% of GDP), alcohol drinking incurs substantial socioeconomic costs to the Korean society. Therefore, this study provides strong support for government interventions to control alcohol drinking in Korea.

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JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health