Alcohol prices, the April effect, and the environment, in violence-related injury in England and Wales

Kent Matthews, Saeed Heravi, Peter Morgan, Nicholas Page, Jonathan Shepherd, Vaseekaran Sivarajasingam

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review


Violent injury varies widely across England and Wales as does the price of alcohol. While the links between alcohol consumption and violence are well established in the medical and epidemiological literature, a causal link is questionable. This paper cuts through the causative argument by reporting a link between the general price of alcohol and violence-related injury across the economic regions of England and Wales. It examines the influence of the real price of alcohol and identifies an ‘April effect’ that coincides with the annual uprating of alcohol prices for excise duties, on violence-related injuries recorded at Emergency Department attendance. The data are monthly frequency of violent injury rates covering the period 2005–2014 across the economic regions. The principal finding is that a one-way relationship between the real price of alcohol and violent injury is established, and tax policy can be used to reduce the incidence of violent injury and the associated health costs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-255
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Journal of Health Economics
Issue number2
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2023


  • C50
  • Emergency departments
  • I30
  • K40
  • Price of alcohol
  • Tax policy
  • Violent injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)
  • Health Policy


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