More

    Record rise in alcohol deaths during Covid pandemic

    Photo: iStock

    The UK saw a record rise in the number of deaths caused by alcohol misuse last year, which public health officials said was linked to the wider social impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

    Some 8,974 people died of alcohol-specific causes in 2020, 18.6 per cent more than in 2019 and the largest increase since records began in 2001, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

    Previous data from health authorities in England had shown a 21 per cent rise in deaths from alcoholic liver disease last year, when Covid-19 lockdowns closed pubs but led to many heavy drinkers consuming more alcohol at home.

    Between 2012 and 2019, alcohol death rates in the UK had been stable, the ONS said.

    “The fact that mortality rates from key causes of death related to alcohol increased in 2020 suggests that an increase in alcohol harm was a wider impact of the pandemic,” a public-sector body, the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, said.

    Pinpointing the exact factors which drove the increase in deaths would take time, the ONS said.

    The total volume of alcohol sold in Britain in 2020 fell slightly. But a survey in March 2021 showed a rise in the number of people who admitted drinking what health officials consider dangerous amounts – equivalent to five bottles of wine a week for men, or three and a half for women.

    In line with previous years, men were more than twice as likely as women to die of alcohol-specific causes.

    Liver disease was the biggest cause of alcohol-specific deaths, accounting for 78 per cent of fatalities, followed by mental and behavioural disorders at 12 per cent and ‘external causes’ such as accidental poisoning at 6 per cent.

    Death rates in both Scotland and Northern Ireland were around 50 per cent higher than in England or Wales.

    Latest

    Appeal lodged over shop plan refusal

    By Chris Binding, Local Democracy Reporter Controversial plans to convert...

    Give c-store winning edge with sports, protein product line

    Soft drinks and snacks are good but going a...

    Store owner caught on his own CCTV cameras selling illegal tobacco

    By Tony Gardner, Local Democracy Reporter A convenience store owner...

    Investors tempted by brewers as spirits sales falter

    Investors are warming to beer stocks as a relatively...

    Don't miss

    Appeal lodged over shop plan refusal

    By Chris Binding, Local Democracy Reporter Controversial plans to convert...

    Give c-store winning edge with sports, protein product line

    Soft drinks and snacks are good but going a...

    Store owner caught on his own CCTV cameras selling illegal tobacco

    By Tony Gardner, Local Democracy Reporter A convenience store owner...

    Investors tempted by brewers as spirits sales falter

    Investors are warming to beer stocks as a relatively...

    Dairy alternatives may be forced to change branding

    Dairy alternatives may have to change their names if...

    Appeal lodged over shop plan refusal

    By Chris Binding, Local Democracy Reporter Controversial plans to convert a former pub into a convenience store are set to be decided by a government-appointed...

    Store owner caught on his own CCTV cameras selling illegal tobacco

    By Tony Gardner, Local Democracy Reporter A convenience store owner has lost licence after being caught on camera selling illicit tobacco to his customers. Police used...

    Investors tempted by brewers as spirits sales falter

    Investors are warming to beer stocks as a relatively cheap way to benefit from growth in alcohol brands, particularly in emerging markets, as easing...