National Task Force on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effect

Recommendations Defining the National Agenda for
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Other Prenatal Alcohol-Related Effects

Summary Notes Prepared By Teresa Kellerman Based on Report Published In
CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report September 20, 2002

Formation of the Task Force:

Established by Public Health Service Act, Section 399G (42 U.S.C. Section 280f, as added by Public Law 105-392), by direction from Congress in 1999 to the Department of Health and Human Services. The Task Force was chartered in 2000 and is managed by the CDC's National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Prevention Team

Function of the Task Force:

To advise federal, state, and local programs and research activities regarding awareness, education, diagnosis, prevention, and intervention
• To coordinate activities with the federal Interagency Coordinating Committee on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (ICCFAS); and
• To submit reports on current and planned activities.


1) Develop clinical definition of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and other alcohol related neurodevelopmental disorders (ARND).

2) Develop surveillance case definition for FAS and ARND.

3) Review relevant research on prevalence, risk, and diagnosis.

4) Review evidence of effective prevention and treatment strategies.

5) Develop research agenda that focuses on the affected individuals and their families

6) Develop research agenda that focuses on clinical findings of susceptibility

7) Develop profile of existing services for affected individuals and women at risk

8) Develop agenda for standard of care for affected individuals

9) Endorse a national media campaign

10) Endorse Surgeon General’s warning statement to be reissued

11) Urge inclusion of FAS/ARND info by Office of National Drug Control Policy

12) Develop checklist of services needed by affected individuals

13) Develop education plan for professionals and service providers

14) Develop a K-12 curriculum about FAS/ARND/prenatal alcohol use

15) Investigate inclusion of FAS/ARND info in credentialization process.

Next Steps:

1) Work closely with CDC, collaborate with ICCFAS

2) Identify which agencies will carry out which recommendations

3) Develop guidelines for diagnosing FAS/ARND and incorporate into medical curriculum.

4) Fund four regional training centers for medical professionals, implement surveys

5) Develop educational curricula for medical professionals for diagnosis of FAS/ARND.

6) Gather information from FAS Center for Excellence Town Hall Meetings.

7) FAS Center for Excellence will identify model programs for prevention and treatment.

8) FAS Center for Excellence will identify gaps in service programs.

More information on the Task Force can be found at
To fully understand how these recommendations were formulated,
please read the minutes of the meetings of the Task Force:

More information on FAS/ARND can be found at
The FAS Community Resource Center