Alcohol consumption patterns of older adults: a study in a regional town in Western Australia
School of Nursing and Midwifery / Edith Cowan College
Aim: This study aimed to demonstrate that opportunistic health screening at health expos can provide an overall impression of alcohol consumption patterns.
Design: A repeated cross-sectional survey design, completed over a four-year period (2011–2014), was used to assess the risk of harmful alcohol consumption, within a community setting of older adults, in the South West region of Western Australia.
Methods: An alcohol screening survey (AUDIT) was used to collect data on alcohol consumption patterns on those aged 65 years and over. A total of 411 surveys were completed.
Results: There was a statistically significant difference in mean risk scores across the four years (p < .001). 6.3–22.2% of survey completers presented as ‘risky’, and a further 3.8–12.3% as ‘high risk’ in terms of alcohol consumption.
Conclusions: Opportunistic screening for alcohol consumption during health expos can aid the identification of at-risk individuals who may require further education or treatment.