Alcoholic Drinks: Misuse

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered at on 24 May 2024.

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Photo of Rachael Maskell Rachael Maskell Labour/Co-operative, York Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if she will undertake a study on trends in alcohol use among young people.

Photo of Andrea Leadsom Andrea Leadsom The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

NHS England holds several data sources covering alcohol use for people aged under 18 years old, including the Smoking, Drinking and Drug Use among Young People survey. This data is collected every two years, and the next survey report is due Autumn 2024, and will include 2023 survey data.

The guidance from England’s Chief Medical Officer for healthcare professionals is clear, an alcohol-free childhood is the healthiest and best option. The Department promotes this through online platforms such as the NHS.UK website, and the Talk to FRANK online resource. Local authorities promote these guidelines as part of their public health duties.

Alcohol or drug dependence is rare in children and young people under the age of 18 years old, although they may be drinking problematically. For those that do need support, the Department has allocated £532 million of additional funding through to 2024/25 to support improvements in treatment, including facilitating 5,000 more young people into age-appropriate alcohol and drug treatment.

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