THE North East remains one of the worst areas of the country for booze abuse – despite a fall in alcohol-related deaths.
Figures from Public Health England show that nationally the alcohol-related mortality for men is down 1.9 per cent since the last update and 7.3 per cent over a five-year period.
However, the North East has the highest rate of admissions to hospital with alcohol-related conditions for males and females and the second highest rate of alcohol-specific mortality for both sexes.
Figures for admissions to hospital with alcohol-related conditions and alcohol specific mortality rates are improving faster in the area than in any other region in the country though.
Colin Shevills, director of campaign group Balance, which is calling for a minimum unit price for alcohol to be set, said: “It’s encouraging that rates for hospital admissions and mortality are falling fastest in the North East.
“Our partners and frontline services work extremely hard to reduce the impact that alcohol has on the health and wellbeing of the North East.
“However, it is still worrying that the North East continues to remain at the top of these tables – clearly more needs to be done. “Alcohol is costing us our health, using valuable NHS resources which could be spent treating other patients and costing the North East economy millions each year.
“The fact is that too many people are drinking too much too often and it is having a devastating impact on the region.
“This is driven by alcohol that is too cheap, too widely available and too heavily marketed.”