Small rise in alcohol prices could cut violence-related hospital emergency visits by 6,000 a year
A small rise of 1% in alcohol prices could significantly reduce violence-related injuries in England and Wales, consequently reducing their burden on hard-pressed emergency departments, concludes a study by Cardiff University.
Published in the journal Injury Prevention, the study finds that violence-related emergency department (ED) attendance is greater when alcohol prices are lower and estimates that over 6,000 fewer violence-related ED attendances per year would result from a 1% rise above inflation on alcohol sold through drinking establishments and shops.
Professor Jonathan Shepherd, Director of the Violence Research Group at Cardiff University, one of the authors of the study, said:
"While alcohol-related violence is generally on the decline in England and Wales it still remains a big problem and places a substantial burden on health services and our emergency departments.
"Our findings suggest that reforming the current alcohol taxation system would be more effective at reducing violence-related injury than minimum unit pricing and would lead to substantial reductions in violence nationally.