A new study shows almost 30% of weekend presentations at hospital Emergency Departments relate to alcohol consumption. 

The report was compiled by staff at University Hospital Galway, in conjunction with researchers from NUI Galway.

It looked at alcohol-related presentations at the 29 Emergency Departments around the country. 

Researchers found that almost 6% of all ED patients had alcohol recorded in their medical notes but on Saturday nights and Sunday mornings, the figure jumped to 29%. 

Those patients were more likely to be men who were brought to hospital by ambulance. The study also found that many left without being seen by a doctor and that they went home against medical advice. 

Researchers reviewed all records across four six hour periods in the country's 24-hour Emergency Departments.

Notes relating to 3,194 people were examined.

The study says alcohol related cases place a significant burden on staff and resources, particularly in the early hours of Sunday mornings.

Health Service Executive West's Director of Public Health Dr Diarmuid O'Donovan has said the findings highlight the need for better alcohol-related prevention measures. 

He has called for a particular focus on services for those with alcohol problems, to ensure they do not end up in ED.

The findings are published in the BMJ Open medical journal.