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Alcohol Use, Gender, Jamaica, Marijuana Use, Tobacco Use, Risk Factors



  1. Govia, Ishtar O. PhD
  2. Doubova, Svetlana V. MD, MSc, DSc
  3. Younger-Coleman, Novie PhD
  4. Atkinson, Uki MSc


Abstract: The purpose of this study was to evaluate gender-specific differences in prevalence and risk factors for alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use among 50- to 65-year-old Jamaicans. We performed secondary analysis of the 2016 Jamaica National Drug Use Prevalence Survey. The dependent variables were self-reported use of tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana in the 30 days before the survey. The independent variables included general, socioeconomic, and community characteristics and concomitant substance use. Gender-stratified multiple Poisson regressions were conducted. The survey included 1,099 individuals aged 50-65 years; 50.3% were men. Reported use was significantly higher in men than in women: alcohol (54.9% vs. 17.8%), marijuana (22.4% vs. 2.2%), and tobacco (19.2% vs. 3.9%). High income was associated with alcohol use in women, whereas low and middle incomes were associated with marijuana use among men. Being employed was associated with tobacco use among women and with alcohol use among men. Rural residence was associated with alcohol use in women and with marijuana use in men. High neighborhood disorder was associated with tobacco use in women and alcohol and marijuana use in men. Concomitant substance use increased the likelihood of alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use in men and women. We conclude that gender-sensitive strategies to substance use prevention and treatment are needed in Jamaica.