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Deaths From Alcohol On The Rise
A total of 534 people have died from alcohol-related illnesses in Lanarkshire over the past three years.
Shocking new data shows that the number of adults who died from abusing booze shot up by 11 per cent in the county over two years.
Last year there were 186 deaths from alcohol-related illnesses compared to 181 in 2014 and 167 in 2013.
Over the three-year period, 160 people died at Wishaw General Hospital, 12 more than 148 deaths at Monklands in Airdrie and 45 more than the 115 East Kilbride’s Hairmyres Hospital.
That means that one person every week was recorded as a death from a booze-related illness at Wishaw General every week.
The highest year for deaths at the hospital over the period was 2014 where 59 people died, three more than last year’s total of 56 and 15 more of 2013 total of 45.
Tory Central Scotland MSP Graham Simpson said the figures were shocking and called for action to tackle the nation’s addiction with booze.
“Every single one is a personal and family tragedy,” he added. It shows that we must continue our efforts to tackle alcohol addiction in Lanarkshire and throughout Scotland.”
Wishaw MSP Clare Adamson said alcohol abuse continues to be a major cause of health and social problems in Scotland.
She said: “The Scottish Parliament have passed The Alcohol (Minimum Pricing) (Scotland) Act 2012, which unfortunately has yet to be implemented due to legal challenge by the Scottish Whisky Association. When enacted however, recent research has predicted that by year twenty of the legislation, alcohol-related deaths will fall 120 per year, and alcohol-related hospital admissions by 2000 per year.
“Minimum Pricing is a start. Alongside this legislation, Scotland must look at its cultural relationship with alcohol and properly educate future generations on the true impact of alcohol abuse on families, services and wider society.’
16,413 patients were discharged from accident and emergency or inpatients were alcohol was mentioned in the discharge for diagnoses over the three-year period.
Of the 16,413, 4327 had attended A&E and 12086 were inpatients at the county’s three hospitals.
Over the three-year period, 5677 people had attended Wishaw General with alcohol-related problems, 1470 had been discharged at the hospital’s A&E and 4207 were inpatients there.
The figures for Monklands Hospital were the highest in Lanarkshire with 6042 recorded. This consisted of 2173 discharged at A&E and 3869 as a hospital inpatient.
Hairmyres recorded the lowest of the county’s three hospital with a a total figure of 4094.
A total of 684 at Hairmyres Hospital’s A&E and 4010 as the hospital’s inpatient,
Lanarkshire Alcohol and Drug Partnership (LADP) undertake the work of tackling drug and alcohol issues. Their multi-agency strategic planning group are made up partners including NHS Lanarkshire, North and South Lanarkshire Councils, Police Scotland, Scottish Fire and Rescue, the Crown Prosecution Service and the voluntary sector.
The remit of the LADP is to safeguard and promote the interests of children, young people and families affected by substance misuse, reduce the level of alcohol and drug related harm at a community level and support individuals with alcohol and/or drug problems by providing a recovery-oriented system of care in Lanarkshire.
An NHS Lanarkshire spokesman said that over the last decade the three-year average shows alcohol-related deaths in Lanarkshire have fallen from 201 between 2003/2005 to 178 between 2013/2015.
Dr Adam Brodie, NHS Lanarkshire’s clinical director for addictions, said: “The best way to address alcohol-related illnesses is of course prevention which is a major focus of the LADP work such as the work it does with young people, diversionary schemes, and young
“Evidence shows this focus can help prevent alcohol issues/addictions emerging.”
For more information on the LADP email LanarkshireADP@lanarkshire.scot.nhs.uk or call 01236 707583.