Would minimum alcohol prices help to reduce liver disease deaths?

  • Posted

Posted 23/03/2012

The Government is proposing a minimum price of 40p per unit of alcohol in England and Wales in an effort to turn the tide against binge drinking. It believes this could transform the behaviour of those who cause the most problems for hospitals and police. It is hoped a new “alcohol strategy” will help local areas tackle problems and encourage responsible drinking. Supermarkets will be banned from offering 2 for 1 and BOGOF deals. The changes would see a ?2.99 bottle of red wine rise to ?3.76 and a 75p lager cost ?1.20. The industry however, has stated that this minimum price is misguided and will hit sensible consumers.At the same time it is reported that deaths from liver disease have reached record levels rising by 25% in less than a decade. Heavy drinking, obesity and hepatitis are believed to be behind the rise.It is reported that over 70% of patients with liver disease end up dying in hospital. Prof Martin Lombard, National Clinical Director for liver disease said “this report makes stark reading .. the key drivers for increasing numbers of deaths from liver disease are all preventable such as alcohol, obesity, hepatitis C and B and we must focus our efforts and tackle this problem sooner rather than later”.Julie Crossley, a clinical negligence lawyer at Ashtons Legal comments: “It is clear and well known that excessive alcohol intake is one of the causes of liver disease and whilst it is understandable that in these difficult financial times the alcohol industry does not welcome these restraints, the rise in liver disease is alarming.”


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