Medics back study on minimum price

23 August, 2010

Leading medical campaigners have backed the revised findings of researchers at Sheffield University which they say support the case for minimum pricing on alcohol.

The backing is included in a submission made by the British Medical Association, Alcohol Focus Scotland and Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems to the Scottish Parliament’s health committee.

It comes despite the revised Sheffield findings – published in April – showing that the number of deaths prevented by minimum pricing would be almost half the estimate in the university’s initial study.

Dr Evelyn Gillan, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, said it supported “a measure that could save more than five lives each week and result in 5,000 less hospital admissions, 3,000 less crimes and more than 30,000 fewer sick days per year once the policy has taken full effect”.

She added: “Our organisations are not alone in our endorsement of the Sheffield study.

“When peer-reviewed by leading international alcohol scientists, the Sheffield modelling study was described as ‘highly significant’ and making a ‘useful contribution’ to thinking and action on alcohol policy.

“We believe that minimum pricing is the single-most effective policy to tackle alcohol misuse in Scotland.”

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