Debate Magazine

"Statistics Misuse 'biggest Health Problem in Northern Ireland'"

Posted on the 14 August 2018 by Markwadsworth @Mark_Wadsworth

From the BBC:
Figures obtained by BBC News NI show the number of alcohol-related deaths in Northern Ireland is the highest on record. Between 2001 and 2016, more than 3,500 deaths in Northern Ireland were attributed to alcohol.
Coroner Joe McCrisken said: "We have an enormous problem with alcohol use, misuse and abuse in Northern Ireland. The figures are frightening because they show that the number of alcohol-related deaths is increasing, so it's important to raise awareness about the dangers."

Okey doke.
Northern Irish population 1.9 million, average life expectancy 70 years, makes about 25,000 deaths a year.
3,500 'alcohol related' deaths (whatever that means) in 16 years = 220 per year.
In summary, only one in a hundred deaths has been accelerated by 'alcohol misuse' or is 'alcohol related'.
Dealing with alcohol-related illnesses costs the health service about £250m a year, said Dr George O'Neill, the chairman of Addiction NI.
And how much does VAT and duty on alcohol sales raise? About three or four times as much as that.
He added that 12,000 people were admitted to hospital each year with alcohol-related problems in Northern Ireland, where 170,000 people drank hazardously and 47,000 drank harmfully.
I'll take his word for it, but out of 170,000 'hazardous' drinkers, only 220 die a year (see above) and 99.9% will survive quite happily, so it can't be that 'hazardous', can it?


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