Belfast Telegraph

3,000 alcohol deaths since 2002

Almost 3,000 people in Northern Ireland have died from alcohol-related illness over the past decade, it was revealed.

Health Minister Edwin Poots is considering imposing a minimum price on cheap alcohol to protect young people, and doctors have warned of the health dangers of binge drinking.

A total of 2,849 people, two-thirds of them men, died from 2002 to 2012, a report from the official statistics agency revealed. Illnesses like liver disease contribute to the toll.

That included 270 deaths in 2012, compared with 238 a decade earlier and 252 in 2011, according to the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA).

Mr Poots has ordered a report on the impact a minimum price for alcohol would have on Northern Ireland.

The move comes after more than 100 young people were treated for the effects of alcohol at a DJ Hardwell concert in Belfast's Odyssey Arena earlier this month.

The ambulance service declared the scene outside the venue a major incident.

The minister said he was concerned about the availability of alcohol at "pocket money prices".

He expects the report to be completed within the next few months.


From Belfast Telegraph