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UK alcohol stats: Lots of data, little change

Today saw the release of three reports offering snapshots of Britain's social and health condition in relation to alcohol. They were:

  1. The Office for National Statistics Alcohol-specific deaths in the UK
  2. Public Health England Local Alcohol Profiles for England (December 2019 update)
  3. NHS Digital Health Survey for England

 

Alcohol-specific deaths in the UK

Year-on-year, the number and rate of alcohol-specific deaths in the UK showed little change (7,551, or 11.9 deaths per 100,000 people in 2018 vs 7,697 deaths, or 12.2 per 100,000 people in 2017), but they remain high compared with nearly 20 years ago. Alcoholic liver disease was the most common cause – typically, older people were most likely to suffer from it – long-term trends were most positive for Scots, and there were hints of a worsening in the alcohol-specific deaths among English women in recent years, in particular.

 

Local Alcohol Profiles for England

When focusing solely on England, the minor mortality update found tiny (but trend-continuing) increases in alcohol-related and alcohol-specific mortality. 

 

Health Survey for England

The other all-England dataset found little change in the number of adults drinking above or below the national guideline limit of 14 units a week. 82% of adults surveyed said they drank, of which half (49%) said that they did so regularly – at least once a week or more often.