Alcohol and drug deaths

Alcohol deaths

ONS data indicates that in 2013 there were 8,416 alcohol-related deaths registered in the UK. In that year, 66% of alcohol-related deaths in the UK were males. Thus, there was an excess of 2,693 deaths of men over women due to alcohol in the UK.

Looking at longer-term trends, the death rate from alcohol-related causes in 2013 was the lowest since 2000.

Drug Deaths 

An ONS bulletin provides statistics covering accidents and suicides involving drug poisonings, including deaths from drug abuse and drug dependence. It doesn’t include other adverse effects of drugs (for example, anaphylactic shock, or deaths during valid treatment for illnesses).

  1. There were 3,346 drug poisoning deaths registered in England and Wales in 2014, the highest since comparable records began in 1993.
  2. Of these, 2,248 (or 67%) were drug misuse deaths involving illegal drugs.
  3. Males were over 2.5 times more likely to die from drug misuse than females (58.0 and 21.9 deaths per million population for males and females respectively).
  4. People aged 40 to 49 had the highest mortality rate from drug misuse.

Note that drug deaths peak in the same age range as Suicide deaths.

The above data imply 2,430 men and 916 women died due to drug poisoning in 2104, an excess of 1,514 men in England and Wales. Applying a correction factor of 1.13, this suggest an excess of male over females deaths due to drug poisoning in the UK of 1,711.

However, if combined with suicide data, this figure would double-account for suicides by drug poisoning. Around 14% of male suicides and 38% of female suicides used drug poisoning. This amounts to 680 men and 522 women suicides due to drug poisoning.

Hence, for England and Wales, the number of deaths due to drug poisoning which were not suicides was 1,750 men and 394 women, an excess of 1,356 men. Correcting to the UK gives an excess of 1,532 men.

Hence, in the UK, the excess of men over women dying due to drug or alcohol in 2013/14 (excluding suicides) was 4,225. This exceeds the excess of male deaths due to Suicide.

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