Booze-fuelled assaults putting Sunderland hospitals under strain

Hospital bosses blame excess alcohol consumption for increased A&E attendances due to fights or altercations.
Hospital bosses blame excess alcohol consumption for increased A&E attendances due to fights or altercations.
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Wearside has the highest A&E admission rates for assault victims in the region.

Sunderland Royal had 246 admissions between May 2014 and April 2015 of people who had been injured after a fight or altercation.

We would urge all members of the public to moderate their drinking.

A spokesman for City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Trust

Per 10,000 of the population this works out at as an admission rate of 8.9 – higher than England’s average of 5.2.

Hospital bosses say many patients they deal with are victims of an attack fuelled by alcohol.

In particular there’s a spike in attendances at the weekends, summer holidays and Christmas.

A spokesman for City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Trust said: “Certainly assaults leading to injury often result in attendances at A&E, usually as a result of excess alcohol consumption, and particularly at weekends and holiday times such as in the summer and at Christmas.

“We would urge all members of the public to moderate their drinking and remember that staff in hospital departments such as ED, and other parts of the healthcare system, are already 
under considerable pressure with patient numbers and complex emergency cases.

“A greater public understanding of the role and dedication of healthcare staff, and a willingness among the public to take greater 
personal responsibility for their own lifestyles and behaviour, would help everyone.”

Nationally assaults by bodily force contributed to 18,135 admission episodes – placing this as the most common method of gaining injuries.

Assaults by a sharp object came in second place, with 3,614 admissions, and 2,050 were caused by blunt objects.

Patients were also admitted 57 times for assault by steam and hot objects.