Heavy drinking costs the NHS £1.7bn a year, says reportBMJ 2003; 327 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.327.7417.701 (Published 25 September 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:701
- Roger Dobson
Treating illnesses and injuries caused by alcohol misuse is costing the NHS up to £1.7bn ($2.8bn; €2.4bn) a year, according to a new report.
Heavy drinking is resulting in an increasing number of premature deaths, health problems, social disorder, and injuries, says the report, which says that in the United Kingdom up to 40% of men's drinking sessions can be classed as binge drinking.
But the total costs, including the costs of absenteeism, alcohol related crime, and human suffering, may be as high as £20bn–almost three times the estimated £7bn in excise duty on alcohol that the government receives each year.