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Alcohol treatment programmes attract more new patients

New annual figures on alcohol treatment activity in England produced by the National Drug Treatment Monitoring System (NDTMS) show continued increases in both patient take-up and successfully completed treatments.

The number of clients admitted for alcohol problems rose slightly (from 108,906 in 2011-12 to 109,683 in 2012-13), as did the number of first-time referrals, by almost 2% over the same period (from 74,353 to 75,773). This marks a fifth consecutive year of increases and is the highest figure recorded since records began in 2008-09.

A record number of patients were discharged from alcohol treatment programmes in 2012-13 – 70,194 – of which almost three-fifths were classed as ‘successful completions’, continuing an upward trend over the 5-year period. Public Health England director of alcohol and drugs Rosanna O'Connor said: "Tackling alcohol misuse is a top priority for Public Health England. The specialist treatment system continues to work well for many people, however, there is more to be done."

Official 2012-13 figures on alcohol and drug treatment activity, and substance misuse among young people in England can be found on the National Treatment Agency website, now part of Public Health England.