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Canadian study reveals “immediate, substantial and significant” reductions in alcohol deaths due to minimum pricing

A new study from Canada has found a link between increases in minimum pricing and a fall in the number of alcohol-related deaths.

Writing in the Addiction Journal, researchers found that between 2002 and 2009, the percentage of deaths wholly attributed to alcohol in British Columbia fell substantially when minimum prices were raised, but also that alcohol-related deaths increased when more private alcohol stores opened.

The study reported that a 10% minimum price rise on average was associated with a 32% reduction, while a 10% increase in the private liquor stores was associated with a 2% increase in acute, chronic, and total mortality rates.

The effects of a 10% increase in minimum price occurred immediately for wholly attributable deaths, which include alcohol poisoning and gastritis. Every percentage increase on average was in correlation with a mortality decline of more than 3%. Significant reductions in chronic and total alcohol-attributable deaths were detected between 2 and 3 years after minimum price increases.

You can find out more about the study, published online today, here.