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National Council on Drug Abuse 2016 National Drug Prevalence Survey Findings

Published:Tuesday | January 17, 2017 | 1:00 AM
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National Council on Drug Abuse 2016 National Drug Prevalence Survey Findings

 

- Alcohol continues to be the drug most widely used in Jamaica. Approximately 40 per cent of the population report that they currently use alcohol. Seventy-five per cent of the population report using alcohol at some point in their lifetime.

- Use of substances is significantly higher among males than females. Five per cent of females currently use ganja, compared to 27 per cent of males. Overall, 16 per cent currently use ganja, while 28 per cent report using ganja at some point in their lifetime.

- Seventeen per cent of the population report current use of cigarettes. The prevalence among males was 11 per cent, while for females it was five per cent. Almost a third of the population used cigarettes at some point in their lifetime.

- One in six males reported that they drove under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs in the past year, while one in 17 females reported doing this.

- One in three males reported binge drinking.

- There is underage (12-17 years) current use of all three substances - 15 per cent for alcohol, 3.3 per cent for ganja and 2.0 per cent for tobacco.

- Average age of first use of alcohol, tobacco or ganja is 15-16 years in males, later in females.

- More than 70 per cent of population believe there is moderate to high risk associated with smoking ganja or its frequent use in food and drinks.

- Over 70 per cent of population have easy access to ganja.

- Less than 15 per cent of the population are aware of most of changes in Dangerous Drugs Act.

- Thirty-four per cent of the population reported that they did not know any of the changes recently made to the Dangerous Drugs Act, while half of the population reported being aware of a few of the changes in the DDA.

- Nearly 90 per cent believe that the use of ganja should be allowed for scientific research or for medical and therapeutic purposes.

 

TRENDS: 2001 vs 2016

 

- Three per cent increase in past year of alcohol use among general population.

- Notable gender differences in current use of alcohol - two per cent increase among females, 13 per cent increase among males.

- Six per cent increase in past year of ganja use among general population.

- Three per cent increase in current ganja use among females, nine per cent increase among males.

- Current cigarette use among females has remained the same since 2001 (five per cent) and has decreased by five per cent among males.

- Current and past year use of alcohol has decreased among adolescents; ganja and tobacco use have remained the same.

 

PARISH COMPARISONS

 

- Current alcohol use is highest in St Ann (60 per cent) and Westmoreland (51 per cent);

lowest in St Mary (36 per cent),

St James (36 per cent) and Clarendon (37 per cent).

- Current ganja use is highest in Kingston and St Andrew and lowest in Portland and Manchester.

- Current tobacco use is highest in St Ann and lowest in Clarendon.