Prevalence and Correlates of Current Alcohol Use among Bhutanese Adults: A Nationally Representative Survey Data Analysis

Kinley Wangdi, Tshering Jamtsho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Alcohol-related ailments are among the 10 leading causes of morbidity and mortality in Bhutan. The objectives of this article were to determine the prevalence and explore the correlates of current alcohol use among Bhutanese adults.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: This is a retrospective study of secondary data from the National Health Survey 2012 of Bhutan. The outcome variable of interest was current alcohol use. The questionnaire was developed following the World Health Organization (WHO) STEPwise approach to Surveillance (STEPS) of noncommunicable diseases. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression was performed to identify the correlates of current alcohol use. The prevalence of current alcohol use was 30.9%. The correlates of current alcohol use were male sex [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) = 1.85; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.47-2.36], widowhood (AOR = 2.92, 95% CI, 1.22-6.99), and chewing betel quid >20 times per week (AOR = 2.07, 95% CI, 1.08-4.03). Primary (AOR = 0.67, 95% CI, 0.50-0.91), high (AOR = 0.52, 95% CI, 0.38-0.71), and university (AOR = 0.46, 95% CI, 0.29-0.73) educated participants were less likely to be current alcohol users when compared with those who had no education. Compared with unskilled workers, services and sales workers were less likely to use alcohol regularly (AOR = 0.64, 95% CI, 0.49-0.82). Homemade alcohol Ara was the most common drink.

CONCLUSION: The national prevalence of current alcohol use in Bhutan is higher than the national average in the WHO South-East Asia Region. Prevention should target the correlates and limit the availability of locally home-brewed Ara.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38-45
Number of pages8
JournalIndian Journal of Psychological Medicine
Volume41
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes

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