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Why Is This Important?
The consequences of excessive alcohol use are severe in New Mexico. New Mexico's total alcohol-related death rate has ranked first, second, or third in the US since 1981; and 1st for the period 1997 through 2010 (the most recent year for which state comparison data are available). The negative consequences of excessive alcohol use in New Mexico are not limited to death but also include domestic violence, crime, poverty, and unemployment, as well as chronic liver disease, motor vehicle crash and other injuries, mental illness, and a variety of other medical problems. Nationally, one in ten deaths among working age adults (age 20-64) is attributable to alcohol. In New Mexico this ratio is one in six deaths.
Alcohol-related death is defined as the total number of deaths attributed to alcohol per 100,000 population, age-adjusted to the U.S 2000 Standard Population. The alcohol-related death rates reported here are based on definitions and alcohol-attributable fractions from the CDC's Alcohol-Related Disease Impact (ARDI) website [http://apps.nccd.cdc.gov/ardi/Homepage.aspx].
- New Mexico Death Data: Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics (BVRHS), Epidemiology and Response Division, New Mexico Department of Health.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, CDC WONDER Online Database
- New Mexico Population Estimates: University of New Mexico, Geospatial and Population Studies (GPS) Program.
How the Measure is Calculated
|Number of alcohol-related deaths in New Mexico
|New Mexico Population
There is a large body of evidence on effective strategies to prevent excessive alcohol use and alcohol-related harm. In the past decade, this evidence base has been the subject of numerous systematic expert reviews to assess the quality and consistency of the evidence for particular strategies; and to make recommendations based on this evidence. These expert reviews have recently been summarized by the NMDOH. The following list summarizes the evidence-based prevention strategies that are well-recommended by experts; and that could be more widely or completely implemented in New Mexico to reduce our alcohol-related problems: [http://ibis.health.state.nm.us/docs/Evidence/EvidenceBasedExcessiveAlcoholUsePrevention.pdf]. The following is a bit more information on prevention in general, and alcohol-related prevention in particular. Primary prevention attempts to stop a problem before it starts. In New Mexico, primary prevention of alcohol-related health problems has focused on regulating access to alcohol and altering the alcohol consumption behavior of high-risk populations. Regulatory efforts have included increasing the price of alcohol (shown to be effective in deterring alcohol use among adolescents), establishing a minimum legal drinking age, regulating the density of liquor outlets, and increasing penalties for buyers and servers of alcohol to minors. DWI-related law enforcement (e.g., sobriety checkpoints), when accompanied by media activity, can also be an important form of primary prevention, increasing the perceived risk of driving after drinking among the general population. Secondary prevention efforts try to detect and treat emergent cases before they cause harm. Screening and brief interventions (SBI) for adults in primary care settings is an evidence-based intervention to address problem drinking before it causes serious harm. Implementing this intervention more broadly in New Mexico primary care settings could help reduce our serious burden of alcohol-related chronic disease and injury. Tertiary prevention involves the treatment of individuals diagnosed with alcohol use disorders so they can recover to the highest possible level of health while minimizing the effects of the disease and preventing complications. According to the most recent estimates from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), [http://oas.samhsa.gov/2k7State/NewMexico.htm#Tabs], roughly 130,000 New Mexicans report past-year alcohol dependence or abuse, indicating an acute need for treatment. However, fewer than one in ten people in need of treatment receives it. Nationally, the most common reasons that people who need and seek treatment do not receive it are because: they have no health insurance and cannot afford the cost; they are concerned about the possible negative effect on their job; or they are not ready to stop using.
Substance Abuse Epidemiology Report Indicator, New Mexico Community Health Status Indicator (CHSI)
Doctors, nurses and other health professionals should screen all adult patients and counsel those who drink too much to drink less. This is called alcohol screening and brief intervention (A-SBI). A-SBI can reduce how much alcohol a person drinks on an occasion by 25%. A-SBI is recommended by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), the Community Preventive Services Task Force (Community Guide), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and the World Health Organization (WHO). For more information on A-SBI, please the CDC vital signs website: [http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/alcohol-screening-counseling/index.html].
The New Mexico Department of Health Substance Abuse Epidemiology Section has New Mexico-specific reports, resources and publications, available at: nmhealth.org/about/erd/ibeb/sap. CDC Alcohol Program has fact sheets, online tool kits, data and recently published literature, available at: www.cdc.gov/alcohol. The CDC also publishes the Prevention Status Reports (PSR), which highlight, for all 50 states and the District of Columbia, the status of public health policies and practices designed to address important public health problems and concerns. The 2013 PSR for excessive alcohol use can be found at: www.cdc.gov/psr/alcohol. The Community Preventive Services Task Force reviews research and makes recommendations to help communities answer the question "what works?" Community Guide recommendations for preventing excessive alcohol consumption can be found at: www.thecommunityguide.org/alcohol.