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Tories to hit drinkers with £500 fine if they end up in hospital as NHS faces £23m NYE binging bill


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Tories to hit drinkers with £500 fine if they end up in hospital as NHS faces £23m NYE binging bill



By Scott Warren

Last updated at 9:46 AM on 31st December 2009




  • Tories could charge £532 for drunk patients
  • Tonight's drunk admissions to cost NHS £23m
  • Home drinkers overpour drinks by two-to-one

Drinkers who end up in hospital could face a bill for more than £500 under new plans being considered by the Tories.

The Conservatives want revellers to pay for any overnight stay in hospital to help meet the soaring cost of binge drinking.


The plan emerged as hospitals prepare for their busiest night of the year, with a centre-right think tank estimating New Year's Eve admissions will cost the NHS £23million.


article-1239584-07A47039000005DC-69_468x487.jpg 'Public health epidemic': Medics help a drunk man


Policy Exchange warned that alcohol misuse in Britain is at such a level it constitutes a public health epidemic.

Think tank health boss Henry Featherstone said: 'Direct costs to the NHS are nearly £3billion a year. Hospital admissions for alcohol intoxication have doubled in a decade.

'The Government should now commit to a review of its entire strategy for tackling harms from alcohol misuse.'

He recommended that the cost of hospital admissions for patients to 'sleep off alcohol excess' should be covered by the individual, not the NHS.

Patients who agreed to take part in an alcohol awareness course would receive a discount.

The report also warned of a rise in liver disease deaths related to alcohol use.

The Tories are looking into the findings and could implement the recommendations in time for next New Year's Eve if they win the next election, which must be held by June.







Meanwhile, home drinkers were told to be more careful measuring their drinks as a Department of Health study found that 'home barmen' regularly overpour drinks by as much as two-to-one.

Those making a resolution to reduce alcohol intake should consider using a measure, having smaller glasses and even banishing alcohol from the house in January to give themselves a flying start, health officials said.

The advice was issued after a series of experiments on 200 people in London, North Shields and Liverpool earlier this month found that overpouring was common.

The average drinker measures a unit of wine at twice what it should be and people drinking spirits at home are giving themselves more than double what they would get in a pub if they ordered a single shot, the study showed.

The findings, issued as part of the Know Your Limits campaign, come after it was estimated that 10million adults in England regularly exceed the recommended daily limits and put their health at risk.

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About time


Long overdue, I'd say. I remember the last time I ended up in A&E a couple of years ago, it was full of drunks who had fallen over and cut themselves etc. Not only that, but many of them were being abusive towards the staff, which was a disgrace.:dozey:

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