Online Program

Disparities in alcohol use patterns and associated problems among racial/ethnic minority groups in the US: Three National Alcohol Surveys 2000-2010

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 : 2:50 p.m. - 3:10 p.m.

Thomas K. Greenfield, PhD, Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
Deidre Patterson, MPH, Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
Katherine J. Karriker-Jaffe, PhD, Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
William C. Kerr, PhD, Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, CA
David A. Gilder, MD, Alcohol Research Center, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA
Cindy L. Ehlers, PhD, Department of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA
Background:  In the U.S., racial/ethnic minority populations show significant disparities in mortality from numerous causes fully or in part attributable to heavy alcohol consumption, e.g., heart disease, diabetes, and unintentional injuries from poisonings, falls and motor vehicle crashes.  The CDC reported that in 2011, AI/AN and non-Hispanic white adults were among groups with the largest frequency and intensity of binge drinking, compared to other racial/ethnic populations. Most US reports of such differences have emphasized Black, White and/or Hispanic/Latino disparities in consumption, social/health consequences and alcohol dependence.  Methods:  Pooling data from 3 National Alcohol Surveys of US adults from 2000-2010 (total N = 22,500) allowed examination of nativity in the larger minority groups (Black and Hispanic/Latino), and study of Asian/Pacific Islanders (A/PI; n=443) and American Indian/Alaskan Native (AI/AN; n=349).  Assessed were current drinking and among drinkers, maximum in any day, exceeding NIAAA low-risk guidelines, tangible alcohol-related consequences and alcohol dependence symptoms.  Weighted analyses used Chi-square and logistic regression.   Results: Current drinking varied by nativity in Black and Latino groups; fewer AI/ANs were 12-month drinkers (54.4% men, 44.9% women vs. overall 64.4% and 55.8%, respectively).  Among drinkers, AI/ANs and US-born Latinos more often consumed larger amounts than other groups, e.g., 27.7% AI/AN and 26.7% US-born Latinos drank 8+ drinks/day, versus 18.2% for White, 11.6% for Black and 15.2% for A/PIs.  Additionally, 53.1% AI/AN and 57.3% of US-born Latino drinkers exceeded low-risk guidelines vs. 48.2% for Whites.  AI/ANs (19.0%) and US-born Latinos (19.5%) had higher levels of ≥1 consequence (vs. 10.6% for Whites) and alcohol dependence (7.2% AI/AN; 7.5% Latinos; 3.6% Whites) Conclusions: Nationally, AI/AN and US-born Latino drinkers consume alcohol most heavily with greater prevalence of associated harms.  We discuss historical, cultural, and other risk factors (e.g., onset age, childhood trauma and disadvantage) affecting disparities, and suggest opportunities for policy, prevention and treatment.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe disparities in alcohol use patterns and associated harms between lager and smaller racial/ethnic minority groups in US national sample and the role of nativity among Black and Latino groups. Explain the potential contributions of early experience, culture and disadvantage in fostering such racial/ethnic disparities. Identify the implications of these disparities and associated risk factors for alcohol policy, prevention and treatment with African American and Latino immigrant and US-born groups, as well as for American Indian/Alaskan Natives om a national basis.

Keyword(s): Latinos, Alcohol Use

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am Center Director of the NIAAA-supported national Alcohol Research Center on the Epidemiology of Alcohol Problems and have authored/coauthored numerous articles on Ethnic/Racial Disparities and associated risk factors. Many of my independent grants have also focused on such disparities, e.g., in alcohol-related mortality.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.