Alcohol consumption among students in tertiary learning institutions : a case of Evelyn Hone college students.

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Mumba, Mutondo Bible
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The University of Zambia
Alcohol abuse and its negative effects among youths is not only a global problem but a Zambian problem too. Evelyn Hone College Management recognized alcohol consumption among students as one of the public health concerns at the institution, and that there has been a lack of research to look at alcohol, especially its effects on students. The World Health Organisation (WHO) in its concern for the use and abuse of alcohol developed a tool to help understand issues surrounding alcohol consumption – the alcohol use disorder identification test (AUDIT). The AUDIT tool was used to understand the theory of planned behaviour and other alcohol consumption issues among students. The study aimed at establishing the levels of alcohol consumption using the alcohol use disorder identification test (AUDIT), and identifying demographic and psychosocial factors associated with alcohol consumption among the 2016 academic year Evelyn Hone College students. The study design employed was a cross sectional one. An adopted, pretested, structured and selfadministered questionnaire was used to collect data. SPSS Version 20 was used for data analysis. Descriptive Statistics, Chi-square test, and Multivariate Logistic Regression were used in data analysis. Alcohol consumption among students was found to be at 63.5%, i.e., 47/74 Students were likely to be found to be alcohol consumers. Of the 235 students who drank alcohol, 49.4% were males and 50.6% were females. The minimum age of first alcoholic drink, among students was found to be 10 years with 16 years and approximately 17years as the mode and mean ages, respectively. Among 235 alcohol consumers, the minimum, maximum, and mean total AUDIT scores were found to be 1, 27 and, 10.03, respectively, of which 126 (53.4%) of them scored ≥8 on the total AUDIT score scale. Multivariate logistic regression revealed that: students whose mothers, fathers or guardians did not consume alcohol were 79.5%, 71.1% and 70%, respectively, less likely to consume alcohol compared to students whose mothers, fathers, or guardians consumed alcohol. Students who never belonged to any club/association at campus were 6.54 times more likely to consume alcohol than students who belonged to at least one club/association. Attitude towards alcohol, subjective norms, intentions (want/plan) to consume alcohol in the next 30 days, and perceived behavioural control abilities were some of factors also found to positively predict a student’s likelihood to consume alcohol. Consequently, hazardous alcohol consumption was found to be a public health problem among Evelyn Hone College students who were also youths. There is need for formulation and enforcement of holistic anti-alcohol policies and interventions in addressing this problem among youths at the institution and in the general population. Further similar research works in other learning institutions and general populations should be encouraged if comprehensive measures aimed at addressing this public health problem in various health settings are to be found and implemented. Key words: Alcohol Consumption, Evelyn Hone College Students, Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT), Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB).
High school students--Alcohol use. , Youth--Alcohol use--Schools.. , Alcohol abuse--Students.