Eoghan Murphy
Eoghan Murphy

06.00 23 Oct 2019


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There was an 80% increase in the number of children admitted to hospital over alcohol-intoxication last year. 

There have been 78 cases over the past three years.

According to details released to Newstalk under the Freedom of Information Act, 36 children under 16 had a diagnosis of alcohol-intoxication when they were discharged after inpatient or day-case stays in Irish hospitals last year.

That breaks down as 18 boys and 18 girls.

The overall number was a big increase on a total of 20 in 2017.

There were 22 admissions the year before.

alcohol-intoxication

These statistics don't include emergency department and outpatient cases, and only include longer - or more serious - admissions.

Sheila Gilheany, from Alcohol Action Ireland, said it is very concerning.

She observed: "We certainly know that there are high levels of young people drinking in Ireland - something like about 60,000 children will start drinking every year.

"The result of that is that you will see this type of very, very dangerous drinking that could lead to people being admitted to hospital."

She added: "We'll be very keen to try and see that there are public health measures introduced that would overall reduce the level of alcohol consumption in Ireland."

The HSE says its addiction services support the provision of an integrated range of preventative, therapeutic and rehabilitation services to meet the needs of service users.

Main image: File photo, picture by David Jones/PA Archive/PA Images

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