Minimum alcohol pricing is 'only credible option', BMA Scotland says

BMA Scotland has called minimum pricing the 'only credible option' for tackling alcohol related problems ahead of a Scottish Parliament meeting on alcohol policy.

The cross-party meeting on alcohol in the Scottish Parliament on Wednesday follows a joint letter sent in June from the opposition parties to health secretary Nicola Sturgeon, which called for her to work with them to explore credible alternatives to minimum unit pricing.

But Dr Brian Keighley, chairman of BMA Scotland called on the political parties to support minimum pricing, or present an ‘equally effective policy’.

‘I am pleased that the political parties are coming together to discuss alcohol policy but it will not be possible to reach consensus until public health is put before party politics,' he said.

'So far, none of the major opposition parties have brought forward credible alternatives to minimum pricing, which modelling has shown could save hundreds of lives, reduce alcohol related illness and harm and cut alcohol consumption by around 5%.'

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