Health and Social Outcomes Associated with High-Risk Alcohol Use

Alcohol is enjoyed by many Canadians and has special social and cultural significance in Canadian society. However, over-consumption of alcohol is linked with many, far-reaching harms. Recent data suggest that one in five Canadian drinkers exceed Canada’s low-risk drinking guidelines. This study examined high-risk drinking behaviours and associated outcomes among Manitobans. We used linked data housed in the Manitoba Population Research Data Repository to answer the following questions: (1) How many Manitobans are drinking more alcohol than is recommended by Canada’s low-risk drinking guidelines and has this number changed over time? (2) How many Manitobans have been diagnosed with an Alcohol Use Disorder over the past 20 years? (3) What are the patterns in healthcare utilization, social service use, and interactions with the justice system among individuals with a diagnosed Alcohol Use Disorder? Our analyses suggest several opportunities where supports can be put in place sooner to help Manitobans who are dealing with harmful consequences of high-risk drinking.

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