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Pricing policy on alcohol backed

Scotland's chief medical officer has backed the Scottish Government's minimum pricing policy for alcohol to tackle drink-related problems.

Speaking at an alcohol summit in Edinburgh, Dr Harry Burns said that "one of the ways in which we can control the amount of alcohol being consumed is to tackle price".

Dr Burns explained: "If we do that, people who in the course of the next year are going to die are going to be drawn back from the brink."

The summit follows the government's publication of its Alcohol Framework in March. It outlined a minimum price per unit, widely expected to be around 40p.

The move is likely to see Scotland become one of the first countries to introduce such a strategy to curb the drinking problem, which has been estimated to cost over £2.2 billion a year.

Dr Burns, who illustrated his speech with graphic images of diseased organs, said: "Alcoholic liver disease is not a pleasant way to go, whether for the patient or the staff looking after you," he added.

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