Destigmatizing alcohol dependence: the requirement for an ethical (not only medical) remedy

Laura Williamson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


The disease model of alcohol dependence or "alcoholism" is often presented as the linchpin in addressing the condition successfully. It has been argued, for example, that adopting a medical approach will reduce the stigma that impedes the provision and acceptance of treatment. However, the medical paradigm has existed for many years without significantly affecting the negative social attitudes that surround dependence. I argue that a reductive scientific approach is not equipped to address the socioethical tensions that dependence creates. To lessen the stigmatization of dependence, it is important to integrate ethical analysis into policy debates on the condition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e5-8
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2012


  • alcohol dependecy
  • social attitudes
  • ethics


Dive into the research topics of 'Destigmatizing alcohol dependence: the requirement for an ethical (not only medical) remedy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this