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Journal Article

Citation

Kypri K, Davie G, McElduff P, Connor J, Langley JD. Am. J. Public Health 2014; 104(8): 1396-1401.

Affiliation

Kypros Kypri is with the School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, and the Injury Prevention Research Unit, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. Gabrielle Davie and John Langley are with the Injury Prevention Research Unit, University of Otago. Patrick McElduff is with the School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle. Jennie Connor is with the Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, University of Otago.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2014, American Public Health Association)

DOI

10.2105/AJPH.2014.301889

PMID

24922142

Abstract

OBJECTIVEs. We estimated the effects on assault rates of lowering the minimum alcohol purchasing age in New Zealand from 20 to 18 years. We hypothesized that the law change would increase assaults among young people aged 18 to 19 years (the target group) and those aged 15 to 17 years via illegal sales or alcohol supplied by older friends or family members.

METHODS. Using Poisson regression, we examined weekend assaults resulting in hospitalization from 1995 to 2011. Outcomes were assessed separately by gender among young people aged 15 to 17 years and those aged 18 to 19 years, with those aged 20 and 21 years included as a control group.

RESULTS. Relative to young men aged 20 to 21 years, assaults increased significantly among young men aged 18 to 19 years between 1995 and 1999 (the period before the law change), as well as the postchange periods 2003 to 2007 (incidence rate ratio [IRR] = 1.21; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.05, 1.39) and 2008 to 2011 (IRR = 1.20; 95% CI = 1.05, 1.37). Among boys aged 15 to 17 years, assaults increased during the postchange periods 1999 to 2003 (IRR = 1.28; 95% CI = 1.10, 1.49) and 2004 to 2007 (IRR = 1.25; 95% CI = 1.08, 1.45). There were no statistically significant effects among girls and young women.

CONCLUSIONS. Lowering the minimum alcohol purchasing age increased weekend assaults resulting in hospitalization among young males 15 to 19 years of age. (Am J Public Health. Published online ahead of print June 12, 2014: e1-e6. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.301889).


Language: en

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