25 May 2015

Hazardous drinking halved since quakes

7:15 pm on 25 May 2015

A health study in Canterbury has found hazardous drinking has halved since the 2011 earthquakes, well below the national average.

The New Zealand Health Survey for 2011 to 2014 found 9.7 per cent of adults in Canterbury over the age of 15 reported hazardous drinking patterns.

This fell from a rate of 18.4 per cent in the same survey conducted between 2006 and 2007.

National rates of hazardous drinking dropped from 17.7 per cent in 2006 to 15.5 per cent in the latest findings.

According to the Ministry of Health quidelines, Hazardous drinking refers to an established drinking pattern that carries a risk of harming physical or mental health, or having harmful social effects to the drinker or others.

It is defined as a score of 8 or more on the 10-question Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT).