Alcohol and drug use account for 6.8% of the burden of disease in Australia (AIHW 2016).  The detrimental impact of alcohol and other drugs on society, families and individuals is significant. For example, risky drinking is associated with injuries from traffic accidents to assault, drowning, overdose and intentional self-harm.

  • 14.3 % of ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people reported drinking at levels that exceeded the guidelines for lifetime risk of harm from alcohol related disease.

The NHMRC Australian Guidelines to reduce health risks from drinking alcohol state

For healthy men and women:

  • Drinking no more that 4 standard drinks on a single occasion reduce the risk of alcohol-related injury from that occasion.
  • Drinking no more than 2 standard drinks on any day reduces the lifetime risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury.

For children and young people under 18 years of age:

  • Not drinking alcohol is the safest option, especially for children under 15 years of age.


Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2016. Australian Burden of Disease Study: Impact and causes of illness and death in Australia 2011. Australian Burden of Disease Study series no. 3. BOD 4. Canberra: AIHW


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Codes & Sources

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics.4727.0.55.001 - Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey: First Results, Australia, 2012-13, 27/11/2013  First Issue 

The data is presented by the ACT Government for the purpose of disseminating information for the benefit of the public. The ACT Government has taken great care to ensure the information in this report is as correct and accurate as possible. Whilst the information is considered to be true and correct at the date of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of the information. Differences in statistical methods and calculations, data updates and guidelines may result in the information contained in this report varying from previously published information.