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Alcohol

Key findings Wirral JSNA Alcohol Section (June 2018)

  • Consumption: Wirral has a lower percentage of abstainers (10.6%) and a higher percentage of binge drinkers (23.8%) compared to national averages. 1.9% of Wirral’s adult population are estimated to be dependent drinkers, males being three times more likely to be dependent than females.

  • Affordability and availability: Alcohol has become increasingly affordable and available over the past few decades nationally and in Wirral, availability is highest in the most deprived areas. However, it appears that alcohol is becoming less available to under 18s in Wirral.

  • Costs: Alcohol was estimated to cost Wirral £131 million in 2011/12.

  • Hospital admissions: Alcohol-specific and alcohol-related hospital admissions in Wirral were above national and regional rates in 2015/16 and have been increasing over the past decade, particularly in people aged over, but have been decreasing in the under 40 age group. Admissions increased with increasing deprivation in Wirral, and were highest among males.

  • Mortality: Alcohol-specific and alcohol-related mortality rates in Wirral were higher than national and regional rates in 2014-16. Rates were higher amongst males and increased with increasing deprivation. Mortality rates in Wirral have recently been increasing, particularly among females, in contrast to national and regional rates which have been decreasing or remaining constant. Wirral females show a larger discrepancy with national and regional mortality rates than Wirral males.

  • Crime: In 2015/16, 22% of crime costs in Wirral were estimated to be related to alcohol. Anti-social behaviour incidents related to alcohol were most common in the more deprived areas of Wirral. Peaks in domestic violence were associated with periods of increased alcohol consumption in Wirral. The percentage of road traffic incidents involving alcohol in Wirral were almost twice as high amongst males (2.9%) than females (1.6%).

  • Homelessness and social services: The majority of local YMCA residents are in contact with drug and/or alcohol services. Wirral had over double the national rate of benefits claimants due to ‘alcoholism’ in 2016. One in three children referred to social care services in 2016/17 in Wirral had ‘alcohol misuse’ as an identified factor, nearly double the national rate.

  • Local views: Residents would like to limit the number of licenced premises and would like to see more public education so they are able to have a say on local licensing. Surveys suggest that local residents’ main reason to drink is that it makes socialising more fun and helps them to relax. Drinking patterns are very diverse in Wirral, often influenced by deprivation.

  • At risk groups: Specific groups of the population at increased risk of alcohol-related harm include; males – although alcohol-related harms are increasing at a faster rate among females in Wirral, deprived populations, people from Irish, Polish and certain other Eastern European backgrounds, children in need of social care services, people coming out of military service and people with mental health problems.

  • Current activities and services: There are a number of active alcohol services and activities in Wirral to help reduce alcohol-related harm. These include; Wirral Ways to Recovery (structured treatment, alcohol screening and brief interventions), Birchwood (residential detox), substance misuse nurses at Arrowe Park, alcohol licensing and a Controlled Drinking Environment to engage street drinkers.


Previous content
Alcohol Chapter (Last updated December 2013)

Most recent related content

JSNA Support Pack for Alcohol (October 2018) includes

Further Information  

The public health burden of alcohol: an evidence review
(2018)
This PHE review looks at the impact of alcohol on the public health and the effectiveness of alcohol control policies.

Wirral Smoking and Alcohol Prevalence Survey (April 2017)
In November 2016 Wirral Borough Council commissioned Praxis to conduct a survey to update their database of information relating to smoking prevalence and patterns of alcohol consumption in the 20% most deprived areas of Wirral. This report summarises the findings of this survey, including analysis of trends and comparison with previous smoking prevalence surveys (the first baseline survey was carried out in 2009). In total 2,902 interviews were successfully completed, from a pool of 5,000 residential addresses – a response rate of 58%. Interviews took place during November and December 2016 with a small number being completed in January 2017

Alcohol and drug misuse prevention and treatment guidance - GOV.UK
This guidance provides information and other resources to support commissioners, service providers and others providing alcohol and drug interventions. Healthcare professionals can use these guidance documents, information and resources to help with providing and improving alcohol and drug misuse prevention and treatment services.

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Other key information sources for you to consider: