· Hospital emergency admissions soar
· North-south division in drinks crisis
Denis Campbell and Jamie Doward
Sunday October 14, 2007
The shocking extent of England's binge-drinking culture is laid bare today with new official figures showing an alarming increase in emergency hospital admissions owing to alcohol abuse.
Previously unpublished NHS data obtained by The Observer reveals that the number of people who had to be taken to hospital over the past five years has risen sharply in every region of the country.The figures, obtained from patient entry records kept by every hospital, come two years after the government relaxed the licensing laws to permit 24-hour drinking and have led critics to demand strong measures to reduce high levels of alcohol-related harm.
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