Health bosses launch debate on drink

WHAT are your views about booze?That is the question being asked of both drinkers and teetotallers in Suffolk today as health bosses launch the Big Drink Debate.

WHAT are your views about booze?

That is the question being asked of both drinkers and teetotallers in Suffolk today as health bosses launch the Big Drink Debate.

The NHS is urging people in the county to consider the issues around alcohol and complete an online survey.

The survey findings will shape new regional alcohol strategies, and could help influence future policy on drinks-related issues such as alcohol sales, licensing hours, alcohol advertising, and drinks promotions.

Dr Paul Cosford, regional director of public health, said: “Alcohol is an important issue and it affects everyone.

“We are encouraging as many people as possible, whether you drink regularly or not, to join in this debate so we can really understand what the people in the East of England think about alcohol to enable us to develop initiatives to reduce alcohol related harm that will have public recognition and support.

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“The most recent figures estimate that there were 77,800 alcohol related hospital admissions in the East of England in 2006/07. That is an average of 213 a day.

“We will also tell the government what people in the East of England think about these issues so we can influence national thinking and policy."

To complete the survey visit www.BigDrinkDebate.org.

What do you think should be done to tackle alcohol abuse? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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