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Alcohol dependency at record high but fewer being treated, data shows

Fewer problem drinkers are receiving treatment even though record numbers need help, figures from the House of Commons library show.

Just 80,454 people in England were treated in 2016-17 for addiction to alcohol,about one in seven of the 605,688 people being deemed to be “alcohol dependent”.

“People addicted to alcohol are paying the price for this government’s cruel and reckless cuts to public health.”

The number of people being treated has fallen by 11,197 (12.2%) since 2013-14, when 91,651 received help. The decline has coincided with an increase in the number of people deemed alcohol dependent. It has risen every year from 581,780 in 2011-12 to 605,688 in 2016-17.

Addiction services are also close to “breaking point” as the result of the £550m of cuts to public health budgets of local councils ordered by ministers since 2015 to give more money to overworked hospitals, Ashworth will say.

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