Drink-related hospital visits on rise

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Drinking can lead to a range of medical problems. Pic © JMU Journalism

Figures released by the NHS show around 340 people in Merseyside have been admitted to hospital five or more times over 2017/18.

Within these figures are cases where doctors consider admissions to be wholly relating to drinking, including alcohol poisoning, liver problems and behavioural disorders, which have all seen an increase.

Raw statistics indicate that, per 100,000 of the population, there are 884 alcohol-related admissions across Liverpool as a whole. Figures also show there has been a 4% increase in England as a whole for alcohol-specific conditions over the past five years, whereas deaths have risen by 6% in just one year.

Dr. Richard Piper, Chief Executive for Alcohol Change UK told JMU Journalism: “Funding for alcohol treatment has been relentlessly cut.

“With those in need of help being unable to access specialist support, they instead become frequent attenders at our enormously over-stretched accident and emergency departments – which is one of the reasons that we have seen an increase in alcohol-related hospital admissions.

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“To stop the mounting pressure on frontline services, costs to the public purse and harm to vulnerable people across the UK, the Government must publish its alcohol strategy, and include within it the effective, workable policy recommendations laid out in the Alcohol Charter.”

Merseyside trusts saw over 10,000 patients admitted to hospitals over the past year. Data showed that around 95 patients were admitted for drink-related diseases at Wirral University Teaching Hospital, 85 to the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen Hospital and about 80 in St Helens and Knowsley Hospitals.

Where the figures paint an unfavourable view of drinking habits in the Merseyside region, the statistics are actually lower than those around the 2009/10 period. Since the table of figures began, there has been at least a drop of four percent in the past 10 years.

About Simran Roy, JMU Journalism