(View our Alcohol-induced Ill Health presentation here. This is a short PDF presentation by Kieran Moriarty, Consultant Gastroenterologist at Royal Bolton Hospital.)

Alcohol related illnesses can have a devastating effect on an individual as well as on families, and they can also be a significant burden to the state.

Self infliction of alcohol infects our communities with violence and disorder and has a draining effect on health and judicial services.

NHS :-

  • Alcohol misuse costs the NHS £1.7 billion a year.
  • 35% of all trips to A & E are alcohol-linked. Between midnight and 5am, numbers rise to 75%
  • In 2005 / 6 there were a quarter of a million drink-related admissions to NHS hospitals, double the number in 1997.
  • 12,000 of those were blind drunk, over 1,000 had alcohol poisoning and above 6,000 had liver diseases and 900+ were in total liver failure.
  • Every GP in the country will see around 365 problem drinkers a year.
  • NHS  and local authorities spend around £217 million a year on alcohol treatment programme –  (source: The People Newspaper )


  • Alcohol is a factor in 40,000 deaths each year.
  • 75% of all deaths from cancer of the gullet, 84% from pancreatitis and 41% of suicides are linked to alcohol.
  • In 2005/6 alcoholic liver diseases killed 4,160 people.
  • The disease costs the NHS £71 million a year.
  • Heavy drinking increases risk of heart disease and cancer of the breast, mouth, throat, liver & rectum.
  • Alcoholic disease is the top reason for liver transplants in UK, costing over £50,000 per operation.
  • 76% of women with sexually transmitted infection admitted they had unprotected sex as a result of drinking.


  • Alcohol is the factor in half of all UK crimes at a significant cost to taxpayers.
  • 1 in 5 arrested test positive for alcohol. Between 10pm and 3am most arrests are drink related.
  • Booze is a factor in 70% of murders, 75% of stabbings and 70% of assaults.
  • 19,000 sexual offences a year are committed under the influence of alcohol.
  • 88% of criminal damage is committed under influence of alcohol.


  • 1 in 5 road deaths is alcohol related.
  • In 2006 there were 560 drink/drive deaths, costing £840 million in emergency service costs. There were 2100 serious accidents with illegal drink levels.
  • 400 people a year die from accidents in the home as result of drinking.
  • Alcohol is a factor in 63% of all fatal falls, 33% of people who die in fires at home have been drinking.
  • Booze is the cause of 38% of all drownings.
  • 9 people a year drown in the bath while drunk.


  • Alcohol cost the UK around £6.4 billion a year in lost production.
  • 17 million working days are lost each year because staff take “sickies “ due to drinking – at a cost of £1.5 billion.
  • 200,000 turn up each day with a hangover that affects performance.
  • 42% admit falling asleep at their desk and 28% throw up.
  • Premature deaths from alcohol abuse costs £2.4 billion in potential output by reducing working life of population.
  • Problem drinking strips another £1.9 billion off productivity.
  • 25% of workplace accidents are related to drinking.
  • Around 50,000 people claim incapacity benefit because of drink problems at a cost to the taxpayer at a cost of more than £ 187 million a year.


  • Booze is a factor in 75% of domestic violence and costs society around £23 billion a year.
  • 1.3 million children live with at least one alcoholic parent. They are more likely to witness aggression and 29% become suicidal.
  • Each year around 14,400 children contact National Association of Children of Alcoholics for help.
  • Up to 60% of child protection cases and 23% of calls to the NSPCC involve drunken adults.
  • About £2.8 million adults in the UK have counselling after being affected by an alcoholic parent.
  • 14% of women with unwanted pregnancies blamed drink for them having unprotected sex.


  • 40% of children from poor homes drink before they are 13.
  • 800,000 children under 15 are regular drinkers.
  • Girls aged 11 – 13 years drink 82% more than they were doing five years ago.
  • Twenty two under 18s are admitted to hospital each day because of binge drinking, 40% rise in six years.
  • Alcohol is a major factor in teenage girls having unprotected sex and getting pregnant.
  • Britain has the highest teen pregnancy rate in Europe.
  • 7,500 UK babies a year are born with alcohol related deformities.
  • Up to 45 babies a week are born with Foetal Alcohol Syndrome –  brain and nerve damage.
  • 80% will need life-long care at a cost of £2 million per child.