Research Article

Regional variations in British alcohol morbidity rates: a myth uncovered? I: Clinical surveys.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984; 289 doi: (Published 17 November 1984) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984;289:1341
  1. R W Latcham,
  2. N Kreitman,
  3. M A Plant,
  4. A Crawford


    Officially recorded rates of many alcohol related problems are much higher in the north than in the south of Britain. To try to shed some light on this the pattern and threshold for use of psychiatric and medical hospital services for alcohol dependence, abuse, and psychosis were studied in three areas differing greatly in official rates of alcohol related problems--namely, the Highland and Tayside regions in Scotland and part of the South East Thames region in England. The disparity in psychiatric admissions for alcohol dependence, abuse, and psychosis were found to be largely explained by admission policies which reflected geographical factors. The results of this study did not support the conventional view that rates of treated morbidity due to alcohol are appreciably higher in the north.