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SAMHSA’s Award-Winning Newsletter
July/August 2010, Volume 18, Number 4 

Adult Substance Use in Special Populations: New Data

Three recent reports from SAMHSA’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) highlight statistics about substance use among American Indian or Alaska Native (AI/AN), Hispanic, and Asian adults.

These studies were developed as part of SAMHSA’s Strategic Initiative on data, outcomes, and quality, an effort to create an integrated data strategy that informs policy makers and service providers on the nature and scope of behavioral health issues.

Fewer AI/AN Adults Drink Alcohol, but Those Who Do Are More Likely to Binge

Substance Use among American Indian or Alaskan Native Adults reveals that the rate of past-month alcohol use (i.e., at least one drink in the past 30 days) among AI/AN adults age 18 or older is significantly lower than the national average for adults (43.9 percent versus 55.2 percent).

However, the report also shows that AI/AN adults have a rate of past-month binge alcohol drinking that is well above the national average (30.6 percent versus 24.5 percent). Past-month binge drinking is defined as having five or more drinks on the same occasion, on at least 1 day in the past 30 days.

cover of Substance Use among American Indian or Alaskan Native Adults - click to view publication

The level of past-month illicit drug use was also found to be higher among AI/AN adults than the overall adult population (11.2 percent versus 7.9 percent).

The study’s other significant findings include:

  • Eighteen percent of AI/AN adults needed treatment for an alcohol or illicit drug use problem in the past year, nearly twice the national average (9.6 percent).
  • One in eight (12.6 percent) AI/AN adults who were in need of alcohol or illicit drug treatment in the past year received it at a specialty facility, about the same as the national average (10.4 percent).
  • AI/AN adults’ past-month substance use rates drop significantly in older age groups. For example, illicit drug use levels drop from 25.4 percent in the 18 to 25 age group to 4.1 percent in those 50 and older.

Download Substance Use among American Indian or Alaskan Native Adults.

Past-Month Substance Use among AI/AN Adults Age 18 or Older Compared with the National Average: 2004 to 2008

Enlarge image

bar chart showing past-month substance use among AI/AN adults age 18 or older - click to enlarge image

* The difference between American Indians or Alaska Natives and the national average is statistically significant at the .05 level.

Source: SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies (June 24, 2010). Figure 2: Past-Month Substance Use among American Indians or Alaska Natives Age 18 or Older Compared with the National Average: 2004 to 2008. Substance Use among American Indian or Alaskan Native Adults. Rockville, MD.

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  Cover Story & Related Articles  
Oil Spill Response

Oil Spill Response

SAMHSA efforts make behavioral health a top priority.



  From the Administrator  
Coping with the Oil Spill

Coping with the Oil Spill

SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde, J.D., talks about participating in public forums in the Gulf states. Read more.

What’s in a Term:  Latest Responses

What’s in a Term: Latest Responses

SAMHSA has received more than 250 emails in response to the Administrator’s call for comments. Read selected responses.


  Recovery Month  
Ready for Recovery Month?

Ready for Recovery Month?

September is here! Visit RecoveryMonth.gov for details on the biggest celebration yet!



  Multicultural Outreach & Data  
Campaigns Focus on Three Populations

Campaigns Focus on Three Populations

For Chinese, Hispanic, and Native young adults, new public service campaigns focus on mental health.


  Trauma  
Responding to Child Traumatic Grief

Responding to Child Traumatic Grief

When children lose loved ones, what happens then? Also read about creating a trauma narrative.

Policy Academy Promotes Behavioral Health for Service Members

Policy Academy Promotes Behavioral Health

SAMHSA recently convened a Policy Academy to help soldiers as they return from the battlefield.


  Trends  
Dramatic Rise in Abuse of Pain Relievers

Dramatic Rise in Abuse of Pain Relievers

More treatment admissions report abuse of pain relievers.

Admission Patterns over a Decade

Admission Patterns over a Decade

Marked changes have occurred in admissions for substance abuse treatment in the past 10 years.


  Statistics  
In the ER:  Reports on Suicide Attempts

In the ER: Reports on Suicide Attempts

What substances showed up in emergency rooms related to suicide attempts by adolescents and young adults?

States Report on Substance Use, Mental Health

States Report on Substance Use, Mental Health

State-level analyses update data on alcohol abuse, cocaine, pain relievers, and more.


  Women & Substance Abuse  
New Data on  Women Who Work Full Time

New Data on Women Who Work Full Time

How does employment affect women’s substance abuse and treatment?


  Suicide Prevention  
Remember the Lifeline!

Remember the Lifeline!

Feeling desperate, alone, or hopeless? Call SAMHSA’s National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).


  Medicaid  
Medicaid Eligibility & Mental Illness

Medicaid Eligibility & Mental Illness

Read about a program that helped increase Medicaid enrollment by 17 percent.


  Other News  
Treatment Directory Available

Treatment Directory Available

National Directory of Drug and Alcohol Abuse Treatment Programs 2010 is now available.

Entertainment Industry Meets with Treatment Experts

SAMHSA’s Dr. H. Westley Clark participated in an expert panel to discuss accurate depictions of substance abuse in entertainment.



  


Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration – 1 Choke Cherry Road – Rockville, MD 20857
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