Focus On Alcohol Misuse Among Older People
Many public health campaigns on the misuse of alcohol are aimed at younger age groups. However, there is evidence that alcohol misuse is increasing in people over the age of 65. For a variety of reasons, alcohol misuse among these older people may go unnoticed.
In the Republic of Ireland (ROI), alcohol consumption among the over 65s is lower than other age groups, and 23% of that age group have never drank. However, 10% of those over 65 are consuming alcohol on four or more days per week, higher than any other age group. While younger people in Northern Ireland (NI) drink more than those in older age groups, 16% of people aged 60-74 exceed the weekly guidelines for sensible drinking.
This edition of the CARDI “Focus on . . .” series looks at alcohol misuse among older people across the island of Ireland and asks if more could be done in policy and social work terms to address the associated health and welfare issues among older age groups.
Examining the impact of a ban on ‘below cost selling’ in the UK
In July 2013, the UK Government announced that it intended to introduce a ban on retailing alcoholic drinks for less than the cost of the duty and VAT payable on the product. Typically referred to as a ban on below cost selling (BBCS). This addendum reports the results of a further appraisal of the new BBCS policy by the University of Sheffiled, as requested by Government, and compares the potential impact of this policy against a 45p minimum unit price.
Modelled income group-specific impacts of alcohol minimum unit pricing in England 2014/15: Policy appraisals using new developments to the Sheffield Alcohol Policy Model (v2.5)
This report was produced at the request of the UK Government to inform consultation and impact assessments around policy options for alcohol pricing arising from the publication of The Government’s Alcohol Strategy in March 2012. Estimates from this new updated version of the Sheffield Alcohol Policy Model (version 2.5) suggest:
1. Minimum unit pricing (MUP) policies would be effective in reducing alcohol consumption, alcohol-related harms (including alcohol-attributable deaths, hospitalisations, crimes and workplace absences) and the costs associated with those harms
2. Moderate drinkers would experience only small impacts from MUP policies. Somewhat larger impacts would be experienced by hazardous drinkers, and the main substantial effects would be experienced amongst harmful drinkers
3. MUP policies would have larger impacts on low income harmful drinkers than higher income harmful drinkers although both would be affected substantially. The impact on low income moderate drinkers would be small in absolute terms