Average of three minors hospitalised with alcohol poisoning each weekend in Antwerp

Hospital emergency departments in Antwerp treat three minors with alcohol poisoning every weekend, new research by the University of Antwerp shows. The city wants to tackle the problem with a new counselling programme.

Doctoral student Hanna van Roozendaal calculated that in Antwerp alone, three minors are hospitalised every weekend with alcohol poisoning. The median age is 16.6 years, and the youngest was 11. They often drank more than 10 glasses of alcohol.

A new monitoring programme by UAntwerp and ZAS Augustinus Hospital offers counselling for children and teenagers who struggle with alcohol abuse. 

In Flanders, more than half of the teenagers admitted with alcohol intoxication do not receive follow-up care from a paediatrician. A different approach can be found in the Netherlands, where alcohol clinics offer intensive counselling for six months: young people are educated about alcohol abuse through interactive websites, are visited by a psychologist and are later contacted for a follow-up interview. The approach has led to fewer relapses. 

A similar project is now under way in the Wilrijk district of Antwerp. Young people who are brought into the hospital after excessive alcohol consumption are treated and monitored and offered the chance to enter the counselling programme. According to ZAS Augustinus Hospital, eight teenagers are taking part in the pilot project. ​


#FlandersNewsService | © BELGA PHOTO JOHN THYS

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