THE DEATH rate from alcohol in Hounslow among men is nearly 50 per cent higher than the national average, shocking new figures reveal.
There were 19.2 deaths from alcohol per 100,000 males in the borough during 2007-9, compared with the national average of 13.1, according to a new report.
Among women the figure was much lower, at four deaths per 100,000 - compared with the England-wide average of 6.1.
The alarming statistics are detailed in a report by the Hounslow Community Safety Partnership, which includes representatives from the council and the NHS, published this month.
The report also reveals more than a fifth (22.5 per cent) of borough residents drink more than the recommended units of alcohol per week, though this is still slightly below the national average.
More than a tenth (10.3 per cent) are classified as binge drinkers, meaning they consume more than eight units for men or six for women in one day, and there are an estimated 5,300 dependent drinkers who feel they are unable to function without alcohol.
Dr Zul Mirza, consultant in emergency medicine at West Middlesex Hospital, said alcohol is behind up to 40 per cent of cases he sees in the A&E ward on a typical Friday or Saturday night.
"I think there's a general increase in deaths associated with alcohol nationally, and I don't think Hounslow's any different," he said.
"At the hospital, we seem to be seeing a year-on-year increase in alcohol-related problems, from liver disease to people getting injured after drinking too much."
According to the report, there were 4,513 admissions to hospital due to alcohol in Hounslow during 2009/10.
It also warns of a number of knock-on issues, from violent crime and traffic accidents to exacerbating mental health problems.
In Hounslow last year, there were 12.3 alcohol-related crimes per 1,000 population, compared with the national average of 7.6
Hounslow's alcohol treatment rate of 3.4 adults per 1,000 population is higher than the national average of three
One in 11 children nationally are believed to be affected by parental alcohol problems, while alcohol is estimated by Alcohol Concern to be a factor in half of all child protection cases
A quarter of clients seen by the Hounslow Domestic Violence Outreach Service have a 'vulnerability' for or 'dependency' on alcohol
The report lists a number of measures being considered to tackle the problem in Hounslow, including a tougher licensing policy, greater use of Controlled Drinking Zones and improved assessment and treatment of problem drinkers.
However, Dr Mirza said it was important to address the problem at a national level, by introducing minimum pricing for alcohol and addressing attitudes towards booze.