"In every corner of the country, nurses are faced with the devastating effects of binge drinking every day. It is an outrage that 811,000 people end up in hospital each year as a result of alcohol. As well as seriously damaging the health of those concerned, alcohol misuse drains vital resources from the already stretched NHS budget. It is staggering that binge drinking is sapping the NHS of £2.7 billion per year when many essential frontline services are struggling financially.
"With a compliance rate of just three per cent, the voluntary labelling scheme is clearly not working. The RCN is calling for the introduction of a single mandatory code to ensure that the alcohol industry does not engage in unscrupulous practices which encourage consumers to drink to excess. Better regulation of the labelling, sale and advertising of alcoholic drinks, as well as widespread education on the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption, is needed to stop this problem from spiralling even further out of control."