Lockdowns cause blip in alcohol death figures after significant fall under SNP

From BBC Scotland today:

Deaths caused by alcohol rose by 17% last year to the highest level for more than a decade, new official figures show.

The National Records of Scotland statistics show there were 1,190 alcohol-specific deaths registered in Scotland, 170 more than the previous year.

This was the highest number of alcohol-specific deaths registered since 2008.


One year, especially a year like 2020, where many were cooped up in their homes for long periods, is not likely to provide evidence of trend. This is particularly true when the data contradict the longer trend:

Although Scotland has shown the highest alcohol-specific death rates for males since 2001, the country has also seen the largest decrease in rates, from a peak of 42.6 deaths per 100,000 in 2003 down to its lowest rate in 2019 (26.7 deaths per 100,000).


8 thoughts on “Lockdowns cause blip in alcohol death figures after significant fall under SNP

  1. Rates can vary from year to year but the underling trend is going down, massively. . People in Scotland were drinking 25% more than people in the south of the UK. It is now 10%? MUP and more awareness have changed people’s drinking habits in Scotland.

    The starting point was a lot higher. It is levelling out by comparison. Historically Scotland was drinking more by comparison. Nothing was done about it. Now it is. The health issues have been acknowledged. In the sixties, medical science development found smoking caused heart attacks.

    More developments, 1970’s+ showed how alcohol had a bad affect on the human body causing cancer and other diseases. People thought it made them ‘happy’ and smoking relieved stress and anxiety. The tobacco companies knew it was bad for the human body but covered it up. Still encouraging people to smoke. They were sued and fined $Millions. There were large payouts to people who suffered serious illness and died prematurely. A lot of countries restrict the sale of alcohol and tobacco. Higher taxes., restrictive hours. Less availability. Westminster introduced 24/7 drinking.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. England announced in May the highest alcohol-related deaths for 20 years. England is doing little to curb irresponsible drinking–indeed the Tory party is funded by the drinks industry.

    Did I mention Lord Baron Hannan announcing “victory for nationhood over tyranny”?
    Irony over tyranny over hypocrisy for toon-clock-faced Toadies!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “England announced in May the highest alcohol-related deaths for 20 years.” Indeed it did – and this was a 20% rise from 2019 to 2020, and linked by the BBC to the onset of the first national lockdown, and linked to long term alcohol problems.

      Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-57008067

      ‘Alcohol killed more people in 2020 in England and Wales than in any of the previous 20 years, official data shows.

      ‘There were 7,423 deaths from alcohol misuse last year – a rise of 20% from 2019, the Office for National Statistics says.

      ‘Deaths increased from March 2020 onwards when the UK’s coronavirus epidemic forced the first national lockdown.

      ‘Most deaths were related to long-term drinking problems and dependency.’

      I suspect Reporting Scotland will tell us about Scotland’s data without context or perspective. The BBC 1 6pm news reported Scotland’s data without either.

      Liked by 4 people

  3. Choose an arbitrary date – a decade, that’s a nice round period, isn’t it? By coincidence, this shows a big rise/ ergo SG FAIL!

    The fair reporter would say, “while the long term trend continues to show a decline from a peak 20 years ago, the data, particularly for men rose in 2020, but is still considerably below the 2020 peak”.

    But, framing it as they did they teed up the Tory spokesperson – he is a real medical doctor! – to say his piece and to equivocate about minimum pricing, because their donors in the alcohol trade want it scrapped

    Liked by 3 people

  4. If , and it’s a BIG IF , the BBC wanted to ”inform’ and educate ” ( part of its Charter , maybe ? ) it might have provided a graph , such as the one above , to give readers a more complete picture .
    Sadly , that is in another universe where the BBC is a News Organisation and not a propaganda stream for a failing UK Government .

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I wondered why the recent spate of negativity in the media, then the penny dropped, the annual GERS farce, this one following Covid is sure to be a belter…

    Cue “broad shoulders” publicity…


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