In March 2012 the Health and Social Care Act (HSCA) was approved, resulting in the commissioning responsibility of specialist drug and alcohol service transferring from the National Health Service (NHS) to local authorities in England.
This shift was designed to allow greater flexibility and freedom to respond to local need.
In this paper, researchers from Kings College London assess the relationship between alcohol-related hospital admission, specialist alcohol treatment provision and deprivation since implementation of the changes within the HSCA.
Alcohol-related hospital admissions were classed as ‘narrow’ or ‘broad’, depending on whether an alcohol-attributable disease was assessed as the primary reason, or as a secondary reasons, for hospital admission.
Local authorities reported a net expenditure for alcohol misuse treatment and prevention activities.
A mean increase per local authority of 6.25 (0.95%) for ‘narrow’ hospital admissions and 59.57 (2.67%) for ‘broad’ hospital admissions, per 100 000 population per year.
There was a national reduction in the rate of entry into specialist alcohol treatment per local authority
There was a decrease in net expenditure per 1000 people of £147 for alcohol misuse treatment and £88 for preventing and reducing alcohol misuse, per year.
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