According to the National Health Survey conducted in 2008, dependence on alcohol was ranked seventeen among the top twenty causes of burden of sickness and injury for Australia in 2007 (Forcier, 2008). Moreover, the harmful effects of alcohol were perceived to contribute a significant 6.7% on the burden of diseases affecting Australian citizens. Further, consumption patterns indicate that close to 2 million (13%) of the Australian adults are at a high risk of the detrimental effects that alcohol presents (Forcier, 2008). Judging from the past records, the trends have been increasing over time.
With regard to age and sex, the National Health Survey reports that by 2007, 16% of adult males and 13% of females consumed alcohol at a high risk level. According to this report, this percentage increased more for females than for males. In addition, the risky drinking levels were highest in persons in the middle ages than the elderly and the young. In particular, the 35-54 age cohorts presented the heaviest drinkers that are faced with a higher risk. Generally, the survey revealed that almost half (49.7%) of the indigenous adults had consumed alcohol the week that the survey was undertaken.
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