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Approximately 7.6 percent of Hawaii's general population reported the average daily consumption of two or more ounces of pure ethanol per day */ and were thus classified as alcohol abusers. 84/ The comparison of alcohol abusers by ethnic group is shown in Table 38. Relative to their population sizes, Caucasians (40.6 percent of alcohol abusers) and Hawaiians/part-Hawaiians (19.4 percent) constitute the groups most at risk for alcohol abuse.

Table 38 also shows ethnic breakdowns of those alcohol abusers who have received treatment. The needs assessment reports that all demographic groups are "dramatically underserved." The unduplicated treatment admission count for fiscal year 1979-1980 represented only 2.8 percent of the estimated alcohol abusers in need of services. 85/ Comparing their percentage in treatment to their percentage of the alcohol abusing population, the Filipinos, Chinese, Japanese, Hawaiian/part-Hawaiian, and "other" ethnic category groups were especially underserved. Caucasians, on the other hand, were overserved.

Drug Use and Abuse

Compared to the U.S. mainland, the 1979 State Survey revealed the following drug use trends in Hawaii:

  • Hawaii has a significantly greater percentage of persons who have used cocaine, hallucinogens, and heroin than the mainland.
  • The current use of cocaine is significantly greater in Hawaii than on the mainland. 86/

Ethnic trends for drug use in Hawaii are also summarized:

  • Over forty percent of both Caucasians (43.2 percent) and Hawaiians/part-Hawaiians (40.2 percent) have tried marijuana.
  • Nearly one out of four Caucasians (22.7 percent) have tried cocaine, while fifteen percent of the Hawaiians/part-Hawaiians have tried it.
  • One out of ten Caucasians (10 percent) and thirteen percent of Hawaiians/part-Hawaiians (13.4 percent) have tried inhalants.
  • One out of five Caucasians (19.9 percent) and nearly twelve percent (11.8 percent) of Hawaiians/part-Hawaiians have tried hallucinogens.
  • Nearly one out of twenty Caucasians (4.6 percent) and Hawaiians/part-Hawaiians (4.9 percent) have tried heroin at least once in their lives.
  • Caucasians have the greatest percentages of lifetime use for all non-medical psychotherapeutic drugs, with the exception of the non-medical use of tranquilizers among Portuguese (14.7 percent).
  • Nearly one out of ten Caucasians (9.5 percent) and one out of twenty Hawaiians and part-Hawanans (4.9 percent) and Portuguese (4.5 percent) report current cocaine use.

*/ Roughly equivalent to four bet-is or four wines or 3.5 hard-liquor drinks in the Hawaii Department of Health Study (p. 6).


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