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Measuring the Units: A review of patients who died with alcohol-related liver disease

There have been a number of documents over the last decade highlighting the care of this group of patients, making recommendations to improve outcome. The National Plan for Liver Services in England published in 2009 identified that secondary care of liver disease was poorly organised and suggested that services for liver patients could be improved at relatively little cost to the NHS. In 2010, the British Society of Gastroenterology, Alcohol Health Alliance UK and the British Association for Study of the Liver published a joint position statement on the care of patients with alcohol-related disease

This report made 11 key recommendations about how the average district general hospital could organise its services to improve care for patients with alcohol-related
problems. There has been national guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence and reports from the Royal College of Physicians of London
and the NHS Confederation. The National end of life care intelligence network6 has recently documented concerns about end of life care for this group of patients and the variations in that care. The Chief Medical Officer’s 2011 report published last year highlighted liver disease as one of the three key areas for population health in England

This report highlights the quality of care provided to patients who died with a diagnosis of alcohol-related liver disease (ARLD). ARLD was previously known as alcoholic
liver disease (ALD). The name has changed but have the issues surrounding the care of this patient group?