Forty-Seven in hospital in Latvia after drinking illegal alcohol

  • 2006-10-25
  • By TBT staff
The number of people who have been admitted to hospitals in the eastern Latvian region of Latgale with severe liver damage caused by drinking illegally distilled alcohol has grown to 47, said the chief doctor of the hospital in Preili. According to the chief doctor, the situation is complicated and a solution is urgently needed, as the local hospital is no longer able to cope with the rising number of patients. So far, seven patients have been taken to hospitals in Riga, seven to a hospital in Latgale's biggest city Daugavpils, two have been admitted to a hospital in Livani, while another six people have been released from hospitals and one victim has died. Normunds Belsis, an aide to Health Minister Gundars Berzins, indicated that this is part of a much wider problem concerning not only health care but also the distribution of illegal alcohol and crime in Latvia's rural areas.