The Institute of Public Health in Ireland (IPH) has said that a provision for Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP) within the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill — due before the Seanad this week — “is key to tackling inequalities in alcohol-related harm”.
IPH director of policy Dr Helen McAvoy said evidence shows there could be 139 fewer deaths and over 4,000 fewer hospital admissions annually if MUP was introduced in Ireland.
“Comprehensive studies on the impact of MUP were developed for the departments of health, North and South, in 2014 by the University of Sheffield,” Dr McAvoy said. “These modelling studies show that MUP has significant potential to reduce alcohol-related harm in general and in particular among the most socio-economically disadvantaged communities.”
The 2014 report’s authors predict that a minimum unit price of 90c would to lead to 1,043 fewer crimes.
“High-risk drinkers, who comprise around 5% of the population, account for 33% of this reduction. Costs of crime are estimated to reduce by €4.9m in year one under this policy, with higher MUP thresholds providing even greater savings,” it said.
Source: Joe Leogue, The Irish Examiner, 07/11/17