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East Lancashire's towns drowning in alcohol
9:32am Friday 17th August 2012 in News
EAST Lancashire boroughs have come in the top 10 nationally for people on benefits because of alcohol-related ill health.
In a study by Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE), Burnley, and Blackburn with Darwen, came third and sixth respectively for the number of incapacity benefit claimants whose main medical reason is alcoholism.
In Burnley, the latest figure was 274.36 per 100,000 of the working age population, and in Blackburn with Darwen, the number was 248.85.
Health experts said levels of ill health and anti-social behaviour linked to alcohol are substantially higher” in poorer communities.
Professor Mark Bellis, director of the North West Public Health Observatory, said: “The more alcohol you drink each week, the more you increase your risks of alcohol-related ill health.
“However, your pattern of drinking, such as whether you drink steadily throughout the week, or binge all your drinks in one night, can change the harms caused by alcohol. Exercise, diet, and other lifestyle issues, also affect the impact alcohol has on drinkers’ health.
“More work is needed to identify how differences in drinking patterns, and in drinkers themselves, contribute to alcohol causing so much harm to the health of our poorest communities.”
In terms of hospital admissions with alcohol-attributable conditions for males, Blackburn with Darwen came in fifth worst in the country, with 2,417.43 per 100,000 population, and Burnley was sixth with 2,382.39.
For female hospital admissions, Burnley was ranked sixth worst, with 1,334.59 per 100,000, and Blackburn with Darwen came eighth, with 1,312.57.
Burnley also came third nationally for the number of under-18s admitted to hospital with alcohol-specific conditions, with 136.22 per 100,000 population.
In the 30 most deprived local authorities nationally, adults are 362per cent more likely to be on incapacity benefit as a result of alcoholism. Males are 72per cent more likely to die from an alcohol-related condition, and females 58per cent more likely, in the 30 most deprived areas.
Ribble Valley was found to have the third-lowest recorded crimes attributable to alcohol in the country.
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