The prevalence of alcohol-related hospital cases is higher in Queenstown than any other southern hospital.
A report by Public Health South, published this month, revealed the southern region has the highest prevalence of hazardous drinking - defined as drinking patterns that risk physical, mental or social harm - in New Zealand.
The prevalence of alcohol-related presentations was highest at Lakes District Hospital, with 12 per cent.
Overall across the three hospitals, 7 per cent of emergency department cases - or 2579 presentations - were alcohol-related.
The report said the minimum cost of alcohol-related emergency department presentations during the survey time frame was more than $1.4 million, which it said was an "extremely conservative" estimate.
Data was collected from patients and health practitioners for Lakes District, Dunedin and Southland hospitals between January 24 and November 6 last year.
Southland has a much higher rate of 15 to 24-year-old alcohol-related hospital admissions than the national average, at 317.6 per 100,000 compared with 199.5 per 100,000 nationally.
In Otago the rate is 215.3 per 100,000.
- The Southland Times
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