Lothian alcohol hospital admissions
Figures released today continue to show the scale of the problem of alcohol misuse in Scottish communities.
The number of people admitted to hospital in Lothian with a diagnosis of alcohol poisoning has increased by half over the last 10 years, with admissions rising from 682 in 1997-98 to 934 in 2006-07.
Those under the age of 24, accounted for nearly a quarter (22.6 per cent) of hospital admissions.
Public Health Minister Shona Robison said:
"These figures are another reminder of the grip alcohol misuse has on Scotland.
"Alcohol misuse costs the NHS £2.25 billion each year - it's affecting our health system, our justice system and our economy.
"Our proposals to tackle the problem of alcohol misuse are bold. They include raising the off-sales alcohol purchase age to 21 - based upon a series of highly successful local pilots - as well as minimum pricing for alcohol and a crackdown on irresponsible off-sales promotions.
"Now that the consultation period has ended, we'll analyse responses before setting out the way forward, which we will do later this year."