21 April 2015
By Bryan T. Smyth
“We need to fully implement existing alcohol legislation to protect our nation’s health”
Fine Gael Cork North Central Senator and the Party’s Seanad Spokesperson on Health, Colm Burke, has today urged the Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar TD, to ensure full implementation of Section 9 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act, saying it is crucial to protect the nation’s health.
“There are many things we can do to reduce alcohol consumption in this country. But one part of the solution to the nation’s alcohol problem is staring us in the face. We need to fully implement Section 9 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act, which provides that premises selling alcohol and other goods must establish a separate area for the sale of alcohol, including a separate entrance inside the premises.
“High levels of alcohol consumption are causing significant health problems in this country. Dr Orla Crosbie, a consultant gastroenterologist at Cork University Hospital, is reported as saying that 20 years ago it was rare to see a female patient with liver damage. Now, she says that 36% of her patients with advanced liver damage caused by alcohol are women.
“Health problems associated with alcohol consumption will increase unless we tackle the issue of excessive alcohol consumption. One measure would be to provide for a clearly defined and segregated alcohol section in retail units that sell alcohol and other goods. I urge the Minister for Health to look at this and I raised the matter today in the Seanad.”