English & Scottish get drunk most often, 25-nation survey finds

The survey questioned more 110,000 people around the globe, including 5,283 in the UK

The English and Scottish have topped an international league table of how often people get so drunk that they lose their balance and slur their speech.

The Global Drugs Survey (GDS) for 2020 suggests the UK’s drink problem is far more dangerous than use of any other drug. More than 5% of people under 25 in the UK reported having sought hospital treatment after getting drunk, compared with a global average of 2%.

The GDS report noted: “Seeking emergency medical treatment is a serious consequence of drinking, with a cost to the health service as well as the individual.”

The UK rate of hospital admissions because of alcohol was higher than among users of any other drug cited in the report apart from heroin, and consumption of alcohol was much more widespread, with 94% of people in UK saying they had drunk alcohol in the last year, compared with 2.3% who had used heroin.

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The survey questioned more 110,000 people around the globe, including 5,283 in the UK, in a three-month period from November 2019 to February 2020, before the coronavirus pandemic.

It repeated last year’s finding that people in the UK get drunk more often than those in other countries, and this year’s finding was more robust because the survey defined what it meant by getting drunk. Respondents were asked to say how many times they had got so drunk that “your physical and mental faculties are impaired to the point where your balance/speech was affected, you were unable to focus clearly on things, and that your conversation and behaviours were very obviously different to people who know you”.

Read more: The Guardian