indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+
ph: 202 630 8439
Fredericks Peebles & Morgan LLP
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Report finds high rate of alcohol deaths in Indian Country
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Filed Under: Health

Excessive alcohol consumption is a leading cause of preventable death among American Indians and Alaska Natives, federal health officials reported last week.

Based on data from 2001-2005, the Indian Health Service and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 11.7 percent of deaths among Native Americans were alcohol-related. This was twice the rate of the general population.

Native men made up the bulk of alcohol-related deaths, the data showed. They accounted for 65.9 percent of deaths among Native Americans below the age of 50.

Going by region, alcohol-related death were highest in the Northern Plains and Alaska. The average annul death rates in these two regions topped 90 per 100,000, the data showed.

The average annual death rates in the Pacific Coast and the Southern Plains, a region that covers Oklahoma and Texas, were the next highest, the report said. They were followed by the Southwest and finally the East, a region that includes Maine, New York and Florida.

"This is the first national report" of alcohol-related deaths among American Indians and Alaska Natives, the researchers said in an editorial note, and "the results demonstrate that excessive alcohol consumption is a leading cause of preventable death and years of lost life in this population."

According to the data, a total of 5,553 alcohol-related deaths were seen among Native American from 2001-2005. The deaths were divided into two categories: acute and chronic.

Acute covers cases such as motor vehicle accidents, homicide and suicide. Chronic covers cases such as liver disease, cirrhosis and stroke.

During 2001-2005, an average of 1,514 alcohol-related deaths occurred among American Indians and Alaska Natives, the report said. The deaths were equally divided among acute and chronic cases.

Among acute cases, motor-vehicle traffic crashes accounted for 27.5 percent of deaths. Among chronic cases, liver disease accounted for 25.2 percent of deaths.

Reducing the number of alcohol-related deaths requires cooperation and coordination among tribes, local, state and federal officials, both on and off the reservation, the researchers said in an editorial note. "Bans on the sale and possession of alcoholic beverages on certain Indian reservations have been shown to reduce consumption and related harms, although the efficacy of such policies is influenced by access to alcohol in surrounding communities," the note stated.

Alcohol is banned on many reservations, such as the Navajo Nation, the largest in the country. Federal authorities in Arizona recently broke up the largest bootlegging ring there in tribal history and the tribe is currently weighing alcohol sales at its first casino.

The Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, one of the largest in the country, is also dry but members of the Oglala Sioux Tribe are able to drive a few miles to the town of Whiteclay, Nebraska, to purchase beer. Tribal activists blame alcohol on a wide range of social problems and unsolved deaths.

The IHS/CDC report was published in the August 29 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Report:
Alcohol-Attributable Deaths and Years of Potential Life Lost Among American Indians and Alaska Natives --- United States, 2001--2005



Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:

Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Activists take annual swim to Alcatraz Island (10/21)
Mark Trahant: Alaska Natives ready for conference and election (10/21)
BIA announces consultations for secretarial election regulation (10/21)
Chelsey Luger & Gyasi Ross: From slow suicide to slow healing (10/21)
Bill John Baker: Addressing breast cancer in our communities (10/21)
ICT interview with Assistant Secretary Kevin Washburn of BIA (10/21)
Navajo Nation court still mulling decision in presidential case (10/21)
Column: Billy Mills still inspires 50 years after Olympic victory (10/21)
Editorial: Winnebago Tribe's business makes a big contribution (10/21)
Lincoln Indian Center adopts permanent alcohol ban after party (10/21)
Suquamish Tribe shares fish from hatchery at annual giveaway (10/21)
Editorial: Bad move by Northern Arapaho Tribe on joint council (10/21)
Wisconsin court to hear appeal over Oneida Nation waste plant (10/21)
Coeur d'Alene Tribe reaches out to family that lost home to fire (10/21)
Closure of Chukchansi Tribe's casino affects reservation water (10/21)
Eastern Shawnee Tribe considers casino on ancestral Ohio site (10/21)
Town meeting for Lac Vieux Desert Band off-reservation casino (10/21)
North Fork Rancheria won't give up off-reservation casino plan (10/21)
Tohono O'odham Nation was looking for off-reservation casino (10/21)
Poarch Creeks won't confirm or deny talks for gaming compact (10/21)
Tim Giago: Deaths of Native men in Rapid City remain unsolved (10/20)
Charles 'Chuck' Trimble: Let Crazy Horse's spirit rest in peace (10/20)
Mark Trahant: Races come down to turnout in three key states (10/20)
Native Sun News: Billy Mills wows youth at Black Hills Powwow (10/20)
Cedric Sunray: Tribes abandon traditional aspects of inclusion (10/20)
Dustina Gill: Vote for Rick Weiland to protect our sacred waters (10/20)
Ousted Project Runway contestant reaffirms Puyallup heritage (10/20)
White House Tribal Nations Conference takes place December 3 (10/20)
Bryan Brewer: Park helps Oglala Sioux Tribe protect its culture (10/20)
Robert Porter: Don't let tribal issues fall prey to partisan politics (10/20)
Gabe Galanda: Abramoff's playbook still used in Indian Country (10/20)
Jay Daniels: Let BIA make changes to rights-of-way regulation (10/20)
Mike McBride: Sovereign goodwill at a low in tribal tax dispute (10/20)
Top Navajo Nation court holds hearing in presidential dispute (10/20)
Eastern Shawnee Tribe to open resort at ancestral site in Ohio (10/20)
Kickapoo Tribe in Kansas selects Lester Randall as new leader (10/20)
Editorial: Address safety concerns about tribal hunts at night (10/20)
Chukchansi Tribe sends layoff notices to most casino workers (10/20)
Rivals raise nearly $16M to block North Fork Rancheria casino (10/20)
Judge won't let BIA proceed with compact for Pojoaque Pueblo (10/20)
Candidates discuss Menominee Nation's off-reservation casino (10/20)
Opinion: Suckers help Chumash Tribe finance casino expansion (10/20)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.