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Home Industry News England has a drink problem, says medical officer

England has a drink problem, says medical officer

17th March 2009

England is in the grip of an alcohol problem and it must recognise the issue of “passive drinking”, the chief medical officer said this week.

Sir Liam Donaldson spoke as he published the 2008 Annual Report, entitled On the State of Public Health.

He said the whole of society was bearing the burden of England’s relationship with drink and the cheap price of alcohol is “killing us”.

“The quality of life of families and in cities and towns up and down the country is being eroded by the effects of excessive drinking,” Sir Liam said.

He proposed a national consensus to “substantially” lower the amount of alcohol consumed, while also suggesting that passive drinking needs to be identified as a major issue.

A minimum price of 50p per unit was also called for by the medical officer, who has held the position since 1998.

Sir Liam’s other duties include chairing the World Health Organisation World Alliance for Patient Safety.

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