LGA responds to PHE report on alcohol consumption and harm during COVID-19

Councils, which are responsible for public health services, are committed to continue supporting people with alcohol and other substance misuse problems despite ongoing pressures made worse by the pandemic.


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Responding to a Public Health England report on alcohol consumption and harm during the COVID-19 pandemic, which shows a 20 per cent increase in alcohol-specific deaths in 2020, Cllr David Fothergill, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said:

“These shocking statistics are a stark wake-up call about the wider impact of COVID-19 on our general health, including for those with alcohol-related conditions.

“Councils, which are responsible for public health services, are committed to continue supporting people with alcohol and other substance misuse problems despite ongoing pressures made worse by the pandemic.

“The worrying increase in alcohol consumption during this period will create further health problems later on, including increased hospital admissions and exacerbating existing health inequalities, with a third of all alcohol-specific deaths occurring in the most deprived 20 per cent of areas. 

“Every life lost to alcohol misuse is another tragic reminder that there is still more work to do as we look to build back better from the pandemic, while reducing pressure on the NHS and social care. Sustainable, long-term funding of councils’ public health services can help us achieve this shared ambition with government.”

Notes to Editors

Public Health England: Alcoholic liver deaths increased by 21% during year of the pandemic