Home > Alcohol-related presentations to emergency departments in Ireland: a descriptive prevalence study.

McNicholl, Brian and Goggin, Deirdre and O'Donovan, Diarmuid (2018) Alcohol-related presentations to emergency departments in Ireland: a descriptive prevalence study. BMJ Open , 8 , (e021932) .

URL: http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/8/5/e021932

Objectives: To determine the prevalence of alcohol-related presentations in all 29 emergency departments (EDs) in Ireland and compare with non-alcohol-related presentations in order to identify opportunities for improvements in the quality of patient care and related data collection.

Design and setting: Descriptive prevalence study reviewing all records in the same four 6-hour periods in every 24-hour ED in the country. Participants: 3194 persons who attended EDs over four specified 6-hour periods.

Primary outcome measures: The prevalence of alcohol-related presentations, comparison with non-alcohol-related presentations and the categorisation of these presentations according to WHO International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision codes.

Results: The total number of presentations was 3194 in the four 6-hour periods, of whom 189 (5.9%) were alcohol related, varying from 29.0% in the early hours of Sunday morning to 1.2% on Monday morning (p>0.0001). The alcohol-related presentations were more likely to be men, attend on early hours of Sunday morning, arrive by ambulance, leave before being seen by a doctor or leave against medical advice; and they were less likely to be admitted to hospital.

Conclusions: Alcohol-related presentations are a significant burden on EDs and ambulance services, especially in the early hours of Sunday mornings. Addressing the alcohol-related burden on EDs requires improvements in data collection and information systems, the development of appropriate interventions and related referral services and better preventive actions for alcohol-related harm.


Item Type:Article
Date:May 2018
Publisher:BMJ Publishing
Volume:8
Number:e021932
EndNote:View
Subjects:A Substance use, abuse, and dependence > Prevalence > Problem substance use
A Substance use, abuse, and dependence > Prevalence > Substance use behaviour > Alcohol consumption
B Substances > Alcohol
G Health and disease > Substance use disorder > Alcohol use > Alcohol intoxication
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Care by type of problem > Emergency care
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Health care programme or facility > Hospital
VA Geographic area > Europe > Ireland

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