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Health professionals back drink price hikes

By Joanne Ellul

More than 80% of doctors and nurses think that raising the cost of alcohol would cut the amount people consume.

A survey by the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal College of Nursing found 73% of health professionals felt action on low priced alcohol was needed to tackle alcohol related problems.

The survey showed that 84% of respondents thought that public health campaigns were not effective.

Another issue highlighted by the survey was under-investment in staff and services for alcohol treatment, including a lack of specialist nurses and access to alcohol liaison services in the community and long patient waiting times for support services.

Professor Ian Gilmore, President of the Royal College of Physicians and Chair of the Alcohol Health Alliance, said: ‘While informing the public through health campaigns is important, these findings shows that front line doctors and nurses treating patients with drink problems do not believe that this enough to reverse our binge drinking culture and must be linked to tough actions on cheap alcohol and round the clock availability.'

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