Factors associated with unrecorded alcohol consumption in Uganda
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The study aimed at assessing factors associated with consumption of unrecorded alcohol in Uganda. Unrecorded alcohol is any alcohol that is either not taxed as an alcoholic beverage and/or not registered in the jurisdiction where it is consumed. One of the main problems with these unrecorded alcohol products is that some of them, such as homemade beverages, are not subject to regulatory controls to ensure that their composition is free of contaminants or toxic compounds which could potentially harm health (Lachenmeier et al., 2016). Demographic and socio-economic characteristics were explored to determine relationship with consumption of unrecorded alcohol. The study employed secondary data got from Uganda’s non-communicable diseases risk factor survey conducted in 2014 where a multi-stage stratified cluster sampling design was used to produce a nationally representative sample. Alcohol consumption was categorized into non-alcohol consumers, consumers of recorded alcohol, and consumers of unrecorded alcohol. Of the 3963 participants, non-alcohol consumers, consumers of recorded alcohol and consumers of unrecorded alcohol accounted for 52.6%, 32.3% and 15.1% respectively. A multinomial probit regression model was used to identify the factors that had a significant effect on unrecorded alcohol consumption. This study found that acquiring formal education lowered the probability that an individual would be a consumer of unrecorded alcohol. The older an individual becomes, the higher their chances of consuming unrecorded alcohol rather than the recorded type. Females had a lower probability of consuming unrecorded alcohol than Males. Furthermore, outcomes in this study show that the lower income earners consume the unrecorded type of alcohol more than the recorded type. On the other hand, for individuals in Eastern, Central and Western relative to their counterparts in Northern Uganda, there was a higher probability of being consumers of unrecorded alcohol. Since Uganda is characterized as a low-income country and yet low-income earners according to the results consume more unrecorded alcohol than the recorded alcohol, policy makers should target mostly the older people, those with no formal education, individuals in Northern Uganda and the lower income earners during policy formulation to regulate unrecorded alcohol consumption and promote the regulated one as it has less health risks.