According to the Department of Health, around a quarter of the population of the UK drink above the recommended weekly guidelines and some 6m above the recommended daily guidelines. Since the middle of the last century, levels of alcohol consumption in the UK have been rising, as has the incidence of alcohol misuse. While alcohol consumption has fallen over recent years in most of Europe, British alcohol consumption continues to rise. If present trends continue, the UK will rise to near the top of the consumption league within the next ten years.
The private healthcare sector provides extensive services for providing people with alcohol addiction with an alcohol treatment programme.