Dear Editor, Many will welcome Government investment into tackling some of symptoms of youth binge drinking. At only £1.4m it may prove too little too late.
A child under 12 is admitted to an A&E unit because of alcohol abuse every 48 hours.
Last year there were 4,441 admissions in the 12-15 years age group – an increase of 12 per cent since 2002. Amongst the 16-17 year olds there was a 66 per cent increase, or 7,766 emergency admissions. The UK could divert research money into treatment services funded by the alcohol industry, ending alcohol being sold at pocket-money prices and educating both children and their parents on dangers. We could consider stopping irresponsible drinks promotions, introducing a minimum pricing regime, a “one strike and you’re out” policy for those who sell to minors and ensuring that all A&E departments use alcohol screening tests with appropriate referrals to Alcohol Health Workers.
A failure to act will ensure that thousands of teenagers die before their grandparents.
Grange Road, Kings Heath