Alcohol-Specific Deaths registered in Northern Ireland 2012-2022

Date published: 14 February 2024


NISRA has today, at 9.30am, published figures for alcohol-specific deaths registered in Northern Ireland, 2012-2022. The definition of alcohol-specific deaths includes conditions known to be exclusively caused by alcohol and excludes conditions which may only be partially attributed to alcohol use.

Key points

  • The total number of alcohol-specific deaths registered in 2022 was 356. This was six more than the previous year (350) and, accounted for 2.1% of all deaths registered in 2022.
  • Since 2012, NI has seen deaths due to alcohol specific causes rise by 45.9% from 244 to the latest reported figure of 356.
  • The alcohol-specific age-standardised mortality rate per 100,000 people was the highest on record, up from 14.6 in 2012 to 19.5 in 2022.
  • Almost two-thirds (65.2%) of the 356 deaths were male. Similarly, the age standardised mortality rate per 100,000 population of alcohol-specific deaths for males was almost twice that of the rate for females (26.1 and 13.2 respectively).
  • Alcohol-specific deaths continue to be more prevalent among the 45-54 and 55-64 age groups, which together accounted for 55.1% of all alcohol-specific deaths registered in 2022.
  • Since 2012, alcoholic liver diseases have accounted for, on average, two thirds of alcohol-specific deaths, increasing from 62.3% in 2012 to 72.5% in 2022.
  • The Belfast Trust had the highest number of alcohol-specific deaths in 2022 (102), followed by Western Trust (72). The South-Eastern Trust had the lowest number (45) of alcohol deaths in 2022.
  • The Belfast Local Government District (LGD) had the highest age-standardised rate of alcohol-specific deaths of all the LGDs in Northern Ireland at 30.1 per 100,000 population in 2022.
  • Between 2018 and 2022, the percentage of alcohol-specific deaths from Northern Ireland's most deprived areas (36.6%) was over three times that of the least deprived areas (10%).
  • Across the UK the most recent year with comparable data is 2021, wherein Scotland and Northern Ireland had the highest alcohol-specific death rates, recording 22.3 and 19.1 deaths per 100,000 respectively. In contrast, England and Wales had lower rates of alcohol-specific deaths, with 13.9 and 15.0 deaths per 100,000 respectively. It should be noted, however, that cross country comparisons will be affected by differences in data collection and collation processes in the separate jurisdictions.

Notes to editors: 

Further statistics on Alcohol-specific deaths can be found at: Alcohol Deaths | Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (

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