Home Health Rise in hospital visits from alcohol use: Ontario study

Rise in hospital visits from alcohol use: Ontario study

by News Desk
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As the debate swirls about the amount of alcohol, if any, Canadians should drinka new study reveals that hospital visits and hospital admissions associated with heavy alcohol use increased in the first year of the pandemic.

Ontario researchers found similar increases in people with and without a history of alcohol abuse.

“This is not what happened among people struggling with alcohol use pre-pandemic. It looks like it made an impact. the study From the group ICES, formerly known as the Institute for Clinical Evaluation Sciences, said.

Before embarking on the study, Mylan, who works in addiction medicine, said more people were reporting more problems with alcohol use since the start of the pandemic. People are reporting drinking more, and alcohol sales have also increased.

“We’re seeing the health effects of increased drinking,” Mylan added, adding that those worried about their own or others’ drinking should know what changes can be made and where to seek help. He said that we should consider

Using health care data from Ontario, researchers looked at people who had one or more medical services because of alcohol in the past two years, or who didn’t.

They also compared the rates of alcohol-related ambulatory visits, emergency department visits, and hospitalizations during the first 15 months of the pandemic (March 2020 to May 2021) compared with those during the same 15 months pre-pandemic (March 2018). May 2019 to May 2019). ).

Overall, the data showed a 15% decrease in alcohol-related emergency room visits and a 6% increase in alcohol-related hospitalizations during the first 15 months of the pandemic.

It also showed a 22% increase in outpatient visits. Outpatient visits include patients seeing either a primary care provider or a psychiatrist for an alcohol use disorder.

“People who show up drunk on Emerge, who need hospitalization for medical management of their withdrawal symptoms…who have eroded the lining of their stomachs depending on how much they have been drinking, or who have been hospitalized with some disease. Depending on how much you drink, you’ll have an attack of something called acute pancreatitis,” Mylan said.

Mylan said that while the increase was cause for concern, it was likely partly due to differences in healthcare provided during the pandemic.

“The rollout of virtual care access for treatment has improved accessibility and reduced that stigma. Now they have easy access to that care,” says Myran.

“This is a positive in the sense that there is a lot of stigma around alcohol use, there are effective treatments, and people need to come forward to seek help if they are drinking in a dangerous way. It’s also something,” Mylan added.

Regarding the decline in emergency room visits for alcohol, Myran said the overall number of emergency room visits declined during the pandemic.

“Since a significant portion of hospitalizations for alcohol use come naturally, the fact that hospitalizations increased by 6%, despite a 15% decrease in these emergency room visits, makes the idea really stand out. It’s telling the story, and the severity has gone up significantly,” says Myran.

Publication of this study comes a few weeks after the Canadian publication Guidance on alcohol and health was updated to show that the amount of alcohol is not good for you, and that the more people drink, the greater the health risks.

Mylan added it was important to note that the study looked at direct harm from alcohol, but other “partially attributable” alcohol-induced harms, such as the majority of colon and breast cancers. The study also did not consider the social harm caused by drinking, such as intimate partner violence and car crashes.

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