Inverclyde has worst alcohol-related death rate in UK

Inverclyde has worst alcohol-related death rate in UK
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The area has topped the table of booze-related deaths per capita in a new study, with the head of a local body today describing the figures ‘extremely disappointing’.

Councilor Robert Moran, who is the convenor of Inverclyde Council’s Integration Joint Board, told the Telegraph that the new statistics – which show the area loses 33 people per 100,000 each year to alcohol – show the extent of the problem.

The independent analysis of UK drink-related death rates was carried out by Colin Angus, a senior research fellow at University and an expert on addiction and reported in the Sunday Times last weekend.

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The analysis showed that Inverclyde’s rate was seven times higher than the number for South Hams, the UK local authority with the lowest booze death toll.

Councilor Moran vowed that Inverclyde Council would work ‘tirelessly’ to reverse the current trend.

He added: “We’re working as hard as we can to reverse this situation, but I’m sadly not surprised by this news.

“Alcohol seems to be a problem throughout the whole of Scotland but I’m really disappointed to see that we’re once again top of the charts for bad news.

“I honestly felt we were getting on top of the situation but clearly that’s not the case.

“Our Drugs and Alcohol Partnership are doing really good work, but I don’t see the tide turning soon. It’s extremely disappointing.

“I think based on the research I’ve been doing it seems that a lot of it’s been brought on during lockdown, I think there’s a legacy from that as well.

“But fundamentally for me I think the key issue here is social deprivation, I don’t think we can ever understate that.”


Councilor Moran also suggested that measures such as the Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing policy may require further examination in light of the new research.

He also raised concerns about the accessibility of alcohol and pointed out the number of services that allow people to have booze ordered straight to their houses.

He said: “The minimum pricing for alcohol was supposed to be helping here, but I don’t know if it’s doing that.

“This research seems to suggest that if it’s working, it doesn’t seem to be working here in Inverclyde.

“There needs to be an awful lot of work done, I think drinking needs to be deglamourized, it’s become almost like buying a bottle of a soft drink now.

“The alcohol industry has transformed its product in the exact same way as we’ve seen with vapes, it’s presented in such a way as if it’s not going to do you any harm.

“There’s not that understanding of the damage that alcohol is doing.

“The beverage companies are very clever about how they market these products, and we have to be clever about how we get the message across about the health issues that go with it and the harms it can cause.”

An Inverclyde HSCP spokesperson said: “We recognize the potential harm associated with increased alcohol consumption and our Alcohol and Drug Partnership has a key focus on working together to provide services and pathways for reducing the potential for harm throughout our local community.

“Our Alcohol and Drug Recovery services have implemented the Alcohol Recovery Pathway, which was developed to standardize quality alcohol care and treatment in services across Greater and Clyde.

“The pathway is designed to reduce harm as a result of alcohol and embodies ten principles of care delivery: ‘No wrong door’ access to services; equality of treatment; people have timely access; services are psychologically and trauma informed; access to mental health assessment and treatment at point of delivery; chronic disease management approach; informed choice of alcohol interventions; support to remain in treatment; clear pathways into other health, care and recovery services; people have the option to have components of their treatment shared with primary care.

“With these actions we continue to work alongside the Inverclyde community to deliver the best care and treatment to reduce the number of preventable deaths as a result of increased alcohol consumption.”



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