The National Council on Substance Abuse (NCSA), joins with the Healthy Caribbean Coalition in observing the 4th Annual Caribbean Alcohol Reduction Day (CARD 2019) this Friday December 6th 2019.
CARD 2019 focuses on women, alcohol and the unique public health and Non-Communicable Disease (NCD) related concerns linked to alcohol consumption among women.
This aligns well with the NCSA’s programming thrust, as outlined in the Sustainable Development Goals focusing on issues of gender and their unique impacts and responses.
The Global Status Report on Alcohol and Health, 2018 (World Health Organization) states that in 2016 the leading contributors to the burden of alcohol-attributable deaths and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) among men were injuries, digestive diseases and alcohol use disorders. Among women, the leading contributors were cardiovascular diseases, digestive diseases and injuries.
According to the 2019 OAS/CICAD “Report on Drug Use In The Americas”, an analysis of alcohol use by sex indicates that the rate is higher among males in all countries, regardless of levels of use.
Alcohol use is at least twice as high among males as among females in Barbados, El Salvador, Guyana, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, and Suriname.
Surveys conducted by the National Council on Substance Abuse show that alcohol is the most commonly used drug within the general population, as well as at the primary and secondary school levels.
Additionally, our Barbados Drug Information Network (BARDIN) reports consistently show that alcohol is one of the top three drugs for which persons seek assistance from our local substance abuse treatment centres.
It is against this backdrop that we salute the Healthy Caribbean Coalition and we join them as they continue to explore policy options to reduce the harmful use of alcohol within this group.