La Trobe University researchers did a deep dive in to the costs of alcohol used in Australia to those impacted alcohol use, as opposed to the drinkers themselves, revealing around cost of near $20 billion in 2016.
The analysis, published in the Journal of Studies on Drugs and alcohol, reduces this $20 billion into: $1.6 billion for the kid protection system because of a grown-up caregiver’s drinking; $560 million for alcohol related domestic violence and almost $3 billion in lost productivity because of people needing to look after a drinker.
Overall the total amount expended on those influenced by drinkers and their drinking is the same as exactly the same amount again for individuals who drink, bringing the full total annual bill to about $40 billion.
This forensic analysis, by La Trobe University researchers, reveals the expense of from alcohol-related violence, automobile accidents, child services, impacts on standard of living and harm to property.
Dr. Jason Jiang, from La Trobe’s Department of Public Health insurance and the guts for Alcohol Policy Research said that, up to now, studies have centered on the cost/harm to the drinker and government agencies giving an answer to the drinker’s behavior and problems.
“This is actually the first study to also gauge the cost to those influenced by others’ drinking through alcohol-related traffic accidents, crime, violence and aggression, family hardship, looking after drinkers and their dependents, and healthcare and social services,” Dr. Jiang said.
“The analysis develops and applies a fresh framework for estimating the expenses of harms because of others’ drinking, revealing that the expense of drinking to people round the drinker is a lot greater than the expenses for the agencies that serve them such as for example hospitals, the criminal justice system, police and alcohol along with other medications and counseling services.”
Dr. Jiang said the analysis reveals the responsibility to others from drinking is of exactly the same general magnitude because the burden that drinkers impose on themselves and on response agencies serving them.
“This distinguishes alcohol from tobacco, for example, where in fact the burden of health injury to the smoker is a lot greater than the responsibility of second-hand smoke,” Dr. Jiang said.
“The findings create a strong case for a dynamic role of governments in reducing burdens that drinking causes to non-drinkers or bystanders, including active intervention in alcohol markets to lessen these externalities.”
The analysis used a national general population survey of 2,649 adults and used response agencies’ data to quantify different costs of alcohol’s injury to others such as for example for healthcare; social services; crime costs; costs of productivity loss; quality of life-year loss along with other expenses.
Alcohol consumption causes three million deaths each year, representing 5.3% of total global deaths in 2016, based on the World Health Organization, along with many social problems, such as for example street assaults, family violence, productivity loss and financial stress.
More info: Heng Jiang et al, Beyond the Drinker: Alcohol’s Hidden Costs in 2016 in Australia, Journal of Studies on Drugs and alcohol (2022). DOI: 10.15288/jsad.2022.83.512
Citation: Alcohol bystanders’ burden revealed (2022, July 26) retrieved 26 July 2022 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-07-alcohol-bystanders-burden-revealed.html
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