'Soaring alcohol misuse' could overwhelm service

Many adults are drinking more since the coronavirus pandemic began, Many adults are drinking more since the coronavirus pandemic began,

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The college estimates that in June, more than 8.4m people in England were drinking at higher-risk levels, up from 4.8m in February.

It says deep cuts made to addiction services could mean patients will miss out on life-saving care.

The rise in risky drinking comes at a time when more people addicted to opiates are seeking help from addiction services, says the college, referring to National Drug Treatment Monitoring System statistics showing 3,459 new adult cases in April - up 20% from 2,947 in the same month the previous year.

Guidelines advise people drink no more than 14 units of alcohol (equivalent to six large glasses of wine or six pints of beer) a week, spreading consumption over three days or more.

Drinking too much can damage your liver and increases the risk of other health conditions such as heart disease and stroke.

People with alcohol use disorder are more likely to develop serious complications if they catch Covid-19.

The college is asking the government to invest millions more in addiction services.

Prof Julia Sinclair, chair of the college's addictions faculty, said: "Covid-19 has shown just how stretched, under-resourced and ill-equipped addiction services are to treat the growing numbers of vulnerable people living with this complex illness.

Read the full story at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-54151481

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