New report shows alcohol consumption still deadly

An editorial from The Herald-Dispatch

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — The sharp increases in overdoses and overdose deaths caused by prescription drugs and heroin have grabbed plenty of attention in recent years as a menace to the public’s health, and with good reason.

But there is another danger – one not so prevalent in the public’s consciousness any more – that continues to take a toll and is doing so at an increasing pace, health officials say. That danger is alcohol, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The federal agency reported recently that 30,700 Americans died in 2014 from what it called alcohol-induced causes such as alcohol poisoning, often associated with binge drinking, and cirrhosis, a disease most often caused by alcohol use. That translates to 9.6 deaths per 100,000 people, an increase of 37 percent since 2002, according to a report in The Washington Post.

And that toll doesn’t even take into account other alcohol-related deaths…

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