A SCOTTISH health board has revealed it admits one patient every four hours on average with an alcohol-related problem.
NHS Fife said there were 1,734 alcohol-related admissions to hospital in Fife between January and September last year.
That works out at six patients a day or one every four hours.
General Manager at NHS Fife, Mary Porter, said the health board is continuing to “work hard” to reduce the number of alcohol-related admissions.
Among the measures being employed are harm interventions, alcohol and substance misuse education in schools, and residential rehabilitation.
She continued: “No one can be in any doubt that Scotland still has an unhealthy relationship with alcohol.”
But she insisted health initiatives “are all having a positive impact on patterns of alcohol use in Fife”.
Fife MP Thomas Docherty claimed those most in need of help are “middle class drinkers”.
He said: “I meet regularly with the local churches who tell me that the group they are most concerned about in terms of people in crisis due to alcohol are actually middle-aged and often, but not solely, middle-class drinkers.”
NHS Health Scotland reported in 2014 that alcohol consumption in Scotland fell by the equivalent of 38 million pints of beer a year since 2009.
The cost of alcohol misuse to the Scottish economy is estimated at between £2.47 billion and £4.64 billion a year.