The Health Research Board (HRB) in Ireland is reporting a 150% increase in juveniles who seek treatment for alcohol abuse over the last six years. HRB’s report coincides with other reports that a staggering 590,000 children are exposed to “hazardous drinking” on a regular basis by their parents.
The Irish Examiner reports that Dr. Suzi Lyons, a senior HRB researcher, said that the figures were an “underestimate,” as the data presented was for only “a fair majority,” and not the entirety of the actual cases.
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The most staggering of the data reported was a 152% jump in total number of cases involving people under the age of 18; in 2005 it was 133, while 2011 saw 335 cases. However, new cases with people under the age of 18 rose from 109 to 267, a 145% increase.
Overall, there was a marked increase in all alcohol related cases in Ireland. In 2005, there were 5,525 total number of cases, which jumped to 7,866 today, a 42% increase. Of those, new cases rose from 3,288 to 4,178, an increase of 29%.
Measures meant to decrease the percentage jumps include heightened alcohol prices and restricted purchasing. Kathryn D’Arcy of the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland said the industry would continue to support responsible drinking and noted the drop in alcohol consumption in recent years.