Prevention of alcohol and drug related harm and addictions

The aim of public authorities is to prevent and reduce the risks, harm and problems caused by the use of alcohol, tobacco and nicotine products as well as drug use and gambling.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is responsible for the planning, guidance and legislation regarding alcohol, tobacco and nicotine product and drug policies. 

It is also responsible for the prevention, monitoring and assessment of gambling-related harm and for the related research. 

The Ministry is in charge of leading the preventive work in substance abuse, whereas the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, together with other authorities, sees to the national development and guidance of this work.

Substance Abuse and Addiction Strategy sets out actions until 2030

The Strategy deals extensively with substance abuse and addictions. The core idea is that the harm caused by substance abuse and addictions can be prevented and treated better than at present. Succeeding in this requires that we engage in comprehensive planning and effective action in different sectors.

The Substance Abuse and Addiction Strategy has the following five priorities: 

  1. strengthening the realisation of the rights of people suffering from substance abuse or experiencing addiction-related harm who are covered by substance abuse services and the rights of those close to them;
  2. strengthening cooperation, information flow, expertise and the knowledge base;
  3. intensifying alcohol, tobacco and nicotine, drug and gambling policy measures;
  4. ensuring the quality, accessibility and availability of both preventive work and substance abuse and addiction services;
  5. ensuring cooperation and expertise at the government level to address substance abuse and addictions.

Alcohol policy

The aim of alcohol policy is to prevent the harm caused by the use of alcohol and to reduce alcohol consumption.

Drug policy

The objective of drug policy is to prevent the use and spread of drugs so as to minimise the health, social and individual harm and financial costs arising from their use and prevention.

Tobacco policy

Tobacco policy aims to protect people from the adverse health effects of tobacco smoke and to end smoking in Finland.

Gambling-related harm

The objective of gambling policy is to prevent and reduce the social, financial and health-related harm caused by gambling. Gambling-related harm is prevented and reduced not only through gambling policy measures but also as part of preventive substance abuse work, preventive and corrective services and the overall promotion of wellbeing, health and safety.   

Substance abuse prevention

The Act on Organising Substance Abuse Prevention (523/2015) governs the work to prevent and reduce alcohol and drug related harm. This work includes preventing and reducing the harm caused by alcohol, drugs and gambling and the use of tobacco and nicotine products.