Representatives of BMA Scotland have warned that the latest figures published by the National Records of Scotland on alcohol-related deaths make it essential that efforts to tackle the harms of alcohol misuse are redoubled.
The figures show that in 2016 there were 1,265 alcohol-related deaths, an increase of 10% on the previous year and the highest annual total since 2010.
Chair of BMA Scotland Dr Peter Bennie expressed his concern on the matter.
“These latest figures showing a worrying increase in alcohol-related deaths last year make clear the scale of the damage caused by Scotland’s relationship with alcohol.”
Bennie also suggested that more must be done to address the issue of problem drinking.
“It underlines why as a country we need to redouble our efforts to tackle the harms caused by alcohol misuse, and why we need the Scottish Government’s coming alcohol strategy refresh to include the kind of wide-ranging measures the BMA and other alcohol campaigners recently called for, including action on marketing and availability.”
The chair of BMA Scotland also suggested some possible measures required to address the situation.
“Chief amongst these though is the need for minimum unit pricing, a policy that big alcohol producers have spent far too long delaying and trying to prevent and which must be implemented as swiftly as possible once the legal process finally ends.”