WEST Dunbartonshire’s MP has said “too many lives are still being ruined by alcohol” in the region.

It comes as the latest figures on alcohol-related deaths were published by the National Records of Scotland (NRS) earlier today.

In West Dunbartonshire, there were 21 alcohol-specific deaths recorded in 2022, a reduction from 40 in the previous year.

Number of alcohol-related deaths recorded in West Dunbartonshire:

  • 2022 – 21
  • 2021 – 40
  • 2020 – 22
  • 2019 – 18
  • 2018 – 34

Across Scotland, there were 1,276 alcohol-related deaths registered in 2022, a two percent increase (up by 31) from 2021.

Martin Docherty-Hughes told the Post he feels that the figures show that Scotland “continues to have a difficult relationship with alcohol”.

He said: “The fall in alcohol deaths in West Dunbartonshire is to be welcomed, but these figures show Scotland continues to have a difficult relationship with alcohol.

“Behind every statistic is a family mourning the loss of a loved one; my thoughts are with each and every one of them.

 “We’re seeing some progress in tackling alcohol-related harm in our most deprived communities through a range of measures implemented by the Scottish Government.

“However, too many lives are still being ruined by alcohol here in West Dunbartonshire and across Scotland.

 “It’s vital that investment continues to be made in reducing health inequalities and improving treatment and support.”

In the last five years, West Dunbartonshire was among seven council areas where alcohol-related death rates were higher than the Scottish average.

The local authority’s five-year average number of deaths between 2018 and 2022 was 135. This figure is down from 140 deaths between 2017 and 2021 but an increase from five years ago when it was 121 deaths for the years 2013 to 2017.