Friday, 28 January 2011

Alcohol-related deaths fall in the UK

During the last 15 or so years, something went badly wrong with social attitudes to alcohol. Deaths related to alcohol consumption increased by 80 percent. At least there was some good news in 2009; the death rate came down slightly.

One interest fact; the death rate among 55-74 year olds is 16 times higher than for 15-34 age group. For people 75 and over, the death rate comes down sharply and is only slightly higher than the national average.

What are we to conclude from that? Heavy drinking is likely to kill you in middle age? Or are you more likely to turn to the bottle as you get older?

On a related subject; would a doubling of the taxes on alcohol be a good idea? I think so, but if you disagree, then tell me why not. That is what the comments button is there for.....


Mark Wadsworth said...

"Deaths related to alcohol consumption increased by 80 percent."

Not quite true.

"Because of the way the government keeps changing the rules on what counts as a death caused by alcohol, it appears as if deaths related to alcohol consumption increased by 80 percent, although nobody knows the truth.

Other statistics say that alcohol consumption has been steadily falling for a couple of decades which would suggest that's an outright lie."

That's better.

dearieme said...

Doctors are pretty bloody good at identifying death - not perfect, but pbg. Assigning cause of death, on the other hand, is partly arbitrary, so leaving lots of room for fashion, politics and whatnot.

Anonymous said...
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Dr Dan Holdsworth said...

Do elaborate on why you wish to massively increase the amount of home brewing and alcohol smuggling. Do you have shares in one of the the Calais alcohol hypermarkets perchance, or do you own a secondhand van selling company?

Alice Cook said...


Because I want to make the world a more miserable place.


bill said...

Alcohol is already heavily taxed compared to most of Europe (and the US). Politicians rant on that the only way to cure the problem is to raise tax's, ignoring the curious fact that countries with cheaper alcohol dont have the problems we do.

I would like to see more discussion/research into why there is a drink problem in the UK. Although I think the problem is larger than just drink as there has been a huge jump in drug use as well. (A nation so unhappy that its turned to self medication?)

A danger in increased taxs for alcohol is the public health problem that could emerge with illegal spirits. Anyone can make safe beer/wine, it takes a lot of skill and great care to make safe spirits (even using the freezing method). Badly distilled alcohol can be toxic, mainly due to the methanol content, but contaminates from the distillation equipment can be a problem too.

Anonymous said...

"I would like to see more discussion/research into why there is a drink problem in the UK."

Go down to a pub on a weekday and do your own research. Only miserable bastards drink.....