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Alcohol Policies and Alcoholic Cirrhosis Mortality in the United States
Filetype[PDF - 427.87 KB]


Details:
  • Pubmed ID:
    26469950
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC4611859
  • Funding:
    1T32 HD075727/HD/NICHD NIH HHS/United States
    R01 AA023376/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS/United States
    R01 AA018377/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS/United States
    R01 AA023376/AA/NIAAA NIH HHS/United States
    T32 HD075727/HD/NICHD NIH HHS/United States
    T71 MC00009/PHS HHS/United States
  • Document Type:
  • Description:
    Introduction

    Stronger alcohol policies predict decreased alcohol consumption and binge drinking in the United States. We examined the relationship between the strength of states’ alcohol policies and alcoholic cirrhosis mortality rates.

    Methods

    We used the Alcohol Policy Scale (APS), a validated assessment of policies of the 50 US states and Washington DC, to quantify the efficacy and implementation of 29 policies. State APS scores (theoretical range, 0–100) for each year from 1999 through 2008 were compared with age-adjusted alcoholic cirrhosis death rates that occurred 3 years later. We used Poisson regression accounting for state-level clustering and adjusting for race/ethnicity, college education, insurance status, household income, religiosity, policing rates, and urbanization.

    Results

    Age-adjusted alcoholic cirrhosis mortality rates varied significantly across states; they were highest among males, among residents in states in the West census region, and in states with a high proportion of American Indians/Alaska Natives (AI/ANs). Higher APS scores were associated with lower mortality rates among females (adjusted incidence rate ratio [IRR], 0.91 per 10-point increase in APS score; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 0.84–0.99) but not among males (adjusted IRR, 0.97; 95% CI, 0.90–1.04). Among non-AI/AN decedents, higher APS scores were also associated with lower alcoholic cirrhosis mortality rates among both sexes combined (adjusted IRR, 0.89; 95% CI, 0.82–0.97). Policies were more strongly associated with lower mortality rates among those living in the Northeast and West census regions than in other regions.

    Conclusions

    Stronger alcohol policy environments are associated with lower alcoholic cirrhosis mortality rates. Future studies should identify underlying reasons for racial/ethnic and regional differences in this relationship.