According to the WHO, an increase in alcohol consumption while countries around the world are blocked to prevent a further spread of the disease can lead to “health vulnerability, risky behavior, mental health problems and violence”.
The organization notes that alcohol “compromises the body’s immune system and increases the risk of harmful health consequences”.
A pandemic myth that drinking alcohol in high concentrations can kill the virus is untrue and can have fatal health consequences, according to the WHO.
Alcohol consumption kills 3 million people a year, the WHO said in its statement, adding that existing laws to prevent excessive alcohol consumption, such as those that restrict access to alcohol, should not be relaxed during the pandemic.
“Alcohol is consumed in excessive amounts in the European Region and takes too many lives,” said Carina Ferreira-Borges, head of the WHO Europe program on alcohol and illicit drugs. “During the COVID-19 pandemic, we really need to ask ourselves what risks are we taking in leaving people in house arrest with a substance harmful to both their health and the effects of their behavior on others, including violence . ”