The hangover cure: stuff of countless tips, tricks and myths. Some swear by a bacon butty and a cup of tea, while others rely on the hair of the dog. Some (masochists) argue that a run round the park is exactly what your broken body needs, while others insist that a prairie oyster cocktail – a raw egg, some Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, salt and ground black pepper – will miraculously cure you and not make you want to vomit.
As scientists continue to search for a solution, a new Australian company says it can get rid of that dreaded morning-after feeling. The Hangover Clinic, which launches in Sydney next month, will administer a novel cure, hooking drinkers up to an intravenous (IV) drip to "eliminate symptoms and accelerate recovery" at a series of pop-up clinics across the Australian city.
According to the company's website, the treatment will have users "off the couch feeling fresh and ready to tackle the day ahead" in as little as 30 minutes, thanks to an IV drip containing saline and vitamins alongside other medications such as anti-nausea treatment. This method – which is already used in some US cities and popular party destinations like Ibiza – will be administered by doctors and medical professionals at the clinics, though house visits can also be arranged.
The move may be welcomed by some with pounding heads and shaky stomachs, but others fear it could promote binge drinking. One such critic is New South Wales politician Walt Secord, who said he was worried it would encourage "irresponsible" drinking and called upon the state government to ensure the service acted in line with health legislation.
"I want New South Wales Health to make sure they've crossed every T and dotted every I. And to make sure that they're not acting irresponsibly," he said in comments reported by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. "However, my concern is that this is… promoting the irresponsible use of alcohol."
"They claim for about $200 they'll hook you up onto an IV drip, of saline, vitamins, and they say that within 30-40 minutes you'll be feeling better," Secord said. "No-one is against someone going out and having a few drinks. But this encourages the irresponsible use of alcohol."
New South Wales Premier Mike Baird agreed that the service should be monitoring, telling the ABC that he wanted to "ensure that we don't encourage a culture of binging".
"We've seen the damage that violence can cause, and, of course, we've got concerns about that, but ultimately, that's something that I'll get the Health Minister to consider", he said.