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Thursday, November 1, 2007

Health-related consequences of problem alcohol use
Overview 6

The purpose of this Overview is to compile and analyse the available data on problem alcohol use in Ireland and its health-related consequences. This will help determine what approaches are likely to be effective in reducing alcohol-related harm in Ireland, and identify gaps in current knowledge so as to inform future research needs in this area.

Alcohol use in the general population in Ireland and among specific sub groups is described using published literature. Alcohol-related morbidity and mortality between 1995 and 2004 is analysed using previously unpublished data from the Economic and Social Research Institute and the Central Statistics Office. Alcohol treatment in Ireland from 2004 to 2005 is also described, using data from the Health Research Board.

Alcohol consumption among Irish people has increased by 17% over the past 11 years, from 11.5 litres per adult in 1995 to 13.4 litres in 2006. This rise in consumption has led to increases in alcohol-related harm and disease, and has resulted in more than 1,775 deaths. This, in turn, has created escalating pressures on our health and hospital services.

A comprehensive new overview, just published by the HRB, looks at the health-related consequences of problem alcohol use. A full copy of the report can be found in the publications section of the HRB website at