Estimates based on national figures suggest that around 800 children (11-15 year olds) in Bath and North East Somerset are estimated to be drinking to get drunk every week (8% of the 11-15 population [2010 mid-year estimates]).
In 2009 data suggests that Bath and North East Somerset was worse than nationally and regionally with respect to the percentage of children who had reported they had been drunk one or more times in the last 4 weeks (20% BANES, 15% England).
- There has been a steady decline in the rate of children and young people (under 18 years) hospital alcohol specific admissions in B&NES to its lowest level since 2006/07-2008/09, from 87.2 per 100,000 population aged under 18 years during the period 2006/07-2008/09 (85 admissions), to 52.1 during the period 2011/12-2013/14 (55 admissions).
Unicef’s 2013 alcohol consumption rates in children in rich countries comparative overview 1
In Unicef’s 2013 alcohol consumption rates in children in rich countries comparative overview, Unicef compares 29 of the world’s most advanced economies.
According to Unicef’s report, in the UK, just under 20% of children aged 11, 13 and 15 reported having been drunk at least twice. The UK has the 7th highest rate in the table. In the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Lithuania, more than 20% of young people report having been drunk on at least two occasions.
Alcohol abuse by young people is 10% or less in only eight countries – France, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and the United States. Alcohol abuse by young people is lowest in the United States.
It is important to note that one of the limitations of these league tables is that internationally comparable data on children’s lives is not sufficiently timely. Between the collection of data in a wide variety of different settings and their publication in quality-controlled, internationally comparable form, the time-lag is typically two to three years. This means that most of the statistics on child well-being used in this report, though based on the latest available data, apply to the period 2009–2010.
The main findings from the annual ‘Smoking, Drinking and Drug Use Among Young People in England’ Survey for 2013 2 are as follows:
- In 2013, around two-fifths of pupils (39%) had drunk alcohol at least once. Boys and girls were equally likely to have done so.
- The proportion of pupils who have had an alcoholic drink increased with age from 6% of 11 year olds to 72% of 15 year olds.
- Less than one in ten pupils (9%) had drunk alcohol in the last week. This continues the downward trend since 2003, when a quarter (25%) of pupils had drunk alcohol in the last week. Older pupils were more likely to have drunk alcohol in the last week: the proportion increased from 1% of 11 year olds to 22% of 15 year olds.
- Pupils who had drunk in the last week had drunk an average (mean) of 8.2 units, less than in recent years. Boys and girls drank similar amounts.
- Most pupils who had drunk alcohol in the last week had consumed more than one type of drink. Beer, lager and cider accounted for the majority of the alcohol boys drank (63%). Among girls, less than a third of the alcohol was drunk as beer, lager or cider (30%). The remainder was likely to be in the form of wine (25%), spirits (22%), or alcopops (20%).
Estimates based on national figures suggest that around 800 children (11-15 year olds) in Bath and North East Somerset are estimated to be drinking to get drunk every week (8% of the 11-15 population (2010 mid-year estimates)). 3
In 2009 data suggests that Bath and North East Somerset was worse than nationally and regionally with respect to the percentage of children who had reported they had been drunk one or more times in the last 4 weeks (20% BANES, 15% England). 4
Referrals to specialised drug and alcohol services for young people (under 18 years) in Bath and North East Somerset are currently at a rate of 5-6 per month for primary alcohol misusers (around 15 referrals a month are for children abusing alcohol with other drugs). 5
Alcohol specific hospital admission
Hospital Episodes Statistics (HES) health profile data
In terms of children and young people (under-18 years) hospital alcohol specific admissions in B&NES, during the three financial years 2011/12-2013/14, the rate is 52.1 per 100,000 population aged u18, or a total of 55 admissions over the three years. This was a decrease compared to the previous rolling three year period from 2010/11 to 2012/13, where the rate is 69.2 per 100,000 population aged u18, or a total of 70 admissions over the previous rolling three years. The latest figures for 2011/12-2013/14 are also at the lowest level since at least 2006/07-2008/09 (Figure 1). Furthermore, for the first time since then, the rate is now not statistically different to the comparable national rate, i.e. England, at 40.1 per 100,000 u18 population. 6
Figure 1: Rate of under-18 years hospital alcohol specific admissions, 2006/07-2008/09 to 2011/12-2013/14. 7
Local Secondary Uses Statistics (SUS) data 2010/11 to 2014/15
Please note that this local analysis has been conducted using SUS data. Therefore, this analysis will not match precisely the HES data analysis presented above from the PHE Health Profile.
There were 107 hospital admissions for alcohol specific conditions in under-18 year olds resident in B&NES between 2010/11 and 2014/15. This represented 100 individuals. There were 5 individuals (5%) who were admitted more than once for alcohol specific conditions during this five year period.
When analysed by month, there are no clear seasonal trends. 8
Nearly half (52|49%) of these 107 admissions from 2010/11 to 2014/15 had a primary diagnosis of 'mental and behavioural disturbances caused by alcohol', or acute intoxication (ICD-10 code F100).
Figure 2: Age proportion of alcohol specific admissions for under-18s between 2010/11 and 2014/15.
Over half of these 107 admissions (59|55%) over this time period were for 16 and 17 year olds. There were 48 admissions (45%) for under-16 year olds.
Figure 3: Gender rates per 100,000 for alcohol specific hospital admissions for under-18s between 2010/11 and 2014/15.
Rates over time for both genders have fallen. However, the under-18 alcohol specific admission rates for females have fallen more steeply compared to the comparable male admission rates. There has been a consistently higher rate of alcohol specific hospital admissions for females compared to males in B&NES between 2010/11 and 2014/15. However, statistical analysis of rates per 100,000 population show there is no statistically significant differences between the genders, or between the time periods.
Figure 4: Under-18 alcohol specific hospital admissions by local deprivation quintile (IMD 2015) 2010/11-2014/15
Figure 4 shows the rates per 100,000 under-18 population by local deprivation quintile of the 100 under-18 olds B&NES residents admitted to hospital for alcohol specific conditions during the five year period 2010/11 to 2014/15. While young people living in the most deprived areas of B&NES experienced the highest rate of admissions, none of the deprivation quintile rates are statistically different from each other.
Bath and North East Somerset plays host to 20,000 students in its higher and further education institutes and the vast majority of these fall within the 18-24 year age group: at high risk from both hazardous drinking and alcohol-related crime. Students tend to spend a high proportion of their available income on alcohol and socialising. 9
Students are a particularly vulnerable group as this period marks the transition into independence for many young adults and is a time where long standing attitudes to alcohol may be formed or hardened. They are vulnerable to peer pressure and the need to be seen to conform to perceived social norms. Many are away from home and established social and support networks for the first time and may not know where to turn when problems emerge. 10
- 1. Unicef Research (2013) Child well-being in rich countries: A comparative overview, http://www.unicef.org.uk/Images/Campaigns/FINAL_RC11-ENG-LORES-fnl2.pdf (downloaded 31/01/14)
- 2. HSCIC (2014), Smoking, Drinking and Drug Use Among Young People in England Survey for 2013, available from: http://www.hscic.gov.uk/catalogue/PUB14579
- 3. Milner, P. et al. (2010) Tackling Alcohol Related Harm in Bath and North East Somerset, Bath and North East Somerset PCT
- 4. Child and Maternal Health Observatory (2012) Bath andNorth East Somerset Child Health Profile,http://www.chimat.org.uk/resource/view.aspx?RID=119948
- 5. Project 28 (2011) in-house data
- 6. Public Health England (2015), Local Alcohol Profiles for England, http://fingertips.phe.org.uk/profile/local-alcohol-profiles
- 7. Public Health England (2015), Local Alcohol Profiles for England, http://fingertips.phe.org.uk/profile/local-alcohol-profiles
- 8. SUS data (2010-2015) Alcohol specific hospital episode statistics in under-18s, Bath and North East Somerest CCG cluster, in-house analysis and report
- 9. Bath and North East Somerset Council (2011) Bath & North East Somerset Draft Refreshed Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy http://democracy.bathnes.gov.uk/documents/s4815/Draft%20Refreshed%20Alcohol%20Harm%20Reduction%20Strategy.pdf(downloaded 12/04/2012)
- 10. Bath and North East Somerset Council (2011) Bath & North East Somerset Draft Refreshed Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy http://democracy.bathnes.gov.uk/documents/s4815/Draft%20Refreshed%20Alcohol%20Harm%20Reduction%20Strategy.pdf(downloaded 12/04/2012)