Cost of alcohol abuse in the UK!

  spuds 10:21 20 Oct 2014

Having recently read an article in my local newspaper, that seems to suggest that alcohol abuse is costing the NHS £43 million in my region alone, I then did a simple internet search and came up with the shocking figure that in the UK it apparently costs the NHS £6 billion per year.

Money which now doubt could be spent and possibly managed better elsewhere, within the NHS.

What's your views on this situation, and what do you think should be done?.

  spuds 10:28 20 Oct 2014

Article about the £6bn spent by the NHS click here

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 11:29 20 Oct 2014

"But the figure should be viewed against the £11.5 billion a year which the drinks industry contributes to the public spending purse from duty and VAT alone."

the Government will not want to lose that revenue.

Its all down to an attitude thing - its macho to be able to drink large quantities of alcohol especially if you are young then it becomes habit followed by addiction.

I enjoy a drink and regularly go drinking with the lads however two pints of beer is enough for me and then I'm on the soft stuff but at my age no one worries about ordering me a orange as part of a round, for youngsters it would be unheard of.

  spuds 11:59 20 Oct 2014

Rumpelteazer - In my drinking days around Scotland, I found that it was the normal to order a light/dark plus a chaser in most places, yet this practice didn't seem to spread over the border. I even recall the days of drinking laws for Sunday, and how some people overcame this by using new laws on 'hotel' accommodation and visitor's.

Your suggestion on making charges, to me, seems a way forward, but will it ever become law, with yet another example of a good idea bogged down by poor administration or forethought.

Fruit Bat - The £billions paid by the drinks industry is possible one of the big stumbling blocks that they government is faced with. For instance, my local council seem to have no problems in issuing licences, and collecting fees and taxes, yet at the same time are often complaining about the aftermath and costs of drinking incidents.

Again going back in time, I recall the days when public houses where in many locations, usually with a community spirit attached. Even the 'bobby-hole' had its regular use, for people wanting their quart jug or beverage off the premises. Even industry, like foundries supplied workers with a drink of ale during the day.

Yet now we see and hear, that most young people have a drinking party before leaving home, because of cost. And this is perhaps where most of the drinking and later violence stems from, and its becoming more of an attitude or macho problem.

But coming back to a solution, is there really going to be one, and one especially that is going to please the majority, who may regard that drinking to the point of abuse wants far stricter controls, and perhaps penalties that will make some people think twice.

  spuds 12:05 20 Oct 2014

Jock1e - Interesting about smoking, because some council's are trying to consult with the aim of stopping smoking in public, starting with places like public parks and possibly following on from that.

  carver 17:53 20 Oct 2014

It isn't possible to charge some one for using a hospital service after having a drink, were would you start and stop.

So some one comes into hospital after falling down after 3 pints, is he drunk, was the drink the cause of the accident or did he just slip.

Some one has a road traffic accident after 10 pints do you charge him for the service even if it wasn't clear who's fault it was.

Once you start making the majority pay for the mistakes of the minority trouble is not far behind.

  bumpkin 19:35 20 Oct 2014

Once you start making the majority pay for the mistakes of the minority .

Is that not the system we already have.

  wee eddie 20:01 20 Oct 2014

8 o'clock ~ The sun is way over the Yardarm and I'm off to abuse some alcohol!

  bumpkin 23:01 20 Oct 2014

wee eddie, good for you, just remember what a drain you are on the health services unless of course you are paying tax and VAT on it like everyone else, something that some do not consider. Last time I went to a pub £4.00 a pint and £11.00 for a cheeseburger.

  BillSers 08:46 21 Oct 2014

8 o'clock ~ The sun is way over the Yardarm and I'm off to abuse some alcohol!

I'll drink to that.

  john bunyan 10:33 21 Oct 2014


Good point. I think that the first time a drunk attends A &E for an obviously drink related visit, they should be told that any future such attendance where drink is the primary cause will be charged for.

Also persistent offenders should be enrolled in a hospital led anti alcoholic programme, as pioneered at St Mary's Paddington.

I also believe that, subject to safety, drunks should be triaged at the end of the queue, and ejected if they cause trouble.

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