A new hospital clinic to tackle the growing number of people arriving at A&E with alcohol-related problems will launch next month.
The alcohol liaison service is being launched at Pinderfields Hospital in response to a rise in the number of people being treated for excessive drinking.
Dr Andrew Furber, the district’s director of public health, said health bosses were working to reduce an increase in alcohol-related illness and injury.
He said: “While we know the majority of people across the Wakefield district enjoy alcohol sensibly, in recent years we have seen a significant rise in the numbers of people admitted to hospital for alcohol-related illness.”
Dr Furber said the service, run by social enterprise Spectrum Community Health, would refer patietns for help with drink problems to reduce future hospital admissions.
He added: “However, we need to reverse this worrying trend and to reduce alcohol-related harm more broadly. to achieve this we need to tackle some of the underlying cultural issues.
“This requires a co-ordinated, partnership approach but this new service takes a significant step in realsiing the ambitions for the district set out in our three-year alcohol strategy.”
Sandra Wormald-McDade, head of alcohol and wellbeing at Spectrum, said: “It has been designed to support those who attend the emergency department and will extend into the wards supporint those admitted to hospital with signs of alcohol misuse.
“Patients will be offered the opportunity to attend one of our daily clinics, allowing our team to assess and treat on the spot.
“This could be by offering brief advice, right through to treatment for more serious alcohol dependency.
“We will be providing a seamless transfer from hospital into community-led support services.
“Additional training to existing medical and nursing staff will help them identify those who need extra help in relation to alcohol misuse.”