What are the key concerns about the impacts of excessive drinking?

BK Ben Knight Public Seen by 46

This discussion is focused on exploring concerns about the impacts of excessive drinking, and growing shared understanding about how to address them.


Alanna Krause (Loomio) Fri 5 Apr 2013 5:21AM

@gisellebareta do we have any good information about alcohol and the health system to answer @johnirving 's questions?


Giselle Bareta (WCC) Sat 6 Apr 2013 12:34AM

@johnirving We know that on a Friday and Saturday night, 60-70% of Emergency Department injury based work is alcohol related and 80% of hand injuries are due to alcohol related violence.

A recent study of the Wellington Free Ambulance Courtenay Place triage project we support has just been released:

C:\Documents and Settings\bareta2g\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\OLK7C2\Ambulance triage and treatment zones at major rugby events in Wellington New Zealand a sobering experience.mht

The results are very interesting.


Giselle Bareta (WCC) Sat 6 Apr 2013 12:35AM

Ambulance triage and treatment zones at major rugby events in Wellington, New Zealand: a sobering experience:

Andrew H Swain, Amanda Weaver, Alasdair J Gray, Mark Bailey, Stephen G Palmer


A prospective analysis was undertaken of the workload of prehospital triage and treatment facilities established in Wellington for the 2011 and 2012 International Rugby Sevens, and the Rugby World Cup 2011 (RWC). The introduction of an alcohol intoxication pathway, the impact of the initiative on ambulance and Emergency Department (ED) workload, and its cost effectiveness were assessed.

A log of patients seen and their diagnoses and treatment was maintained. An alcohol questionnaire was completed when applicable. Patients intoxicated with alcohol were managed in accordance with a flowchart designed for paramedic use. Costs and savings were calculated.
Results Half the patients were New Zealanders. The average age was 25 years with a slight female preponderance (52.9% female). 30% were students. Alcohol was a contributory or causative factor for the patient’s attendance in 80-90% of cases. Approximately 60% of the 121 patients seen at the last two events would have had to be transferred to the ED in the absence of the treatment centre. Cost savings for the ambulance service and ED for the RWC and 2012 Sevens are estimated to be NZ$70,000. No adverse clinical event was identified.

With minimal supervision, event medics and paramedics can safely care for the majority of patients attending large rugby events in New Zealand, easing the pressure on ambulances and the ED, and generating significant cost savings for those services.