Debate: With booze-related hospital admissions spiralling, should we call time on the sale of cheap alcohol?

UK: Almost 900 more people are admitted to hospital every day for drinking compared to five years ago, figures show.

A round-up of existing data shows there were 1.1 million admissions in England relating to alcohol in 2009/10 - 879 more per day than five years previously.

Overall, in the five years to 2009/10, there was a 25 per cent rise in the number of people admitted for reasons that were due to drinking.

The report was published by the North West Public Health Observatory at Liverpool John Moores University.

Professor Mark Bellis, a director of the Observatory, said: “Cheap alcohol is no longer a commodity that this country can afford.

“The scale of damage revealed by these profiles shows that alcohol is a problem for everyone in England.

“Even those families not directly affected by alcohol related health problems, violence or abuse still pay towards the billions in taxes for the policing, health services and social support required to tackle this national problem.”

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The report showed a wide variation across the country in rates of hospitalisation, with 3,114 admissions for alcohol per 100,000 people in Liverpool, dropping to 850 per 100,000 on the Isle of Wight.

The figures come against a backdrop of increasing numbers of people suffering and dying from chronic liver disease.

n What do you think? Should the government intervene to prevent the sale of cheap booze? Post your views below.