New Brief on Alcohol-Involved Death Rates from 2006 to 2019

Publication Date: Jul 12, 2021

New Brief on Alcohol-Involved Death Rates from 2006 to 2019

Alcohol-related deaths have increased significantly almost every year since 2007. An April 2021 report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, State Health Access Data Assistance Center draws on statistics data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention to present trends and variations in alcohol-related death rates in the United States from 2006 to 2019.


From 2006 to 2019, death rates from alcohol-involved causes increased significantly in every state except for Alaska and Hawaii, which had statistically unchanged rates. Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Nebraska, and North Dakota saw their alcohol related death rates more than double between 2006 and 2019. Geographically, the highest death rates are largely found in states west of the Mississippi River.


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Data also showed a wide variation across race and ethnicity.


"In 2019, American Indian and Alaska Native people had the highest total alcohol-involved death rate, at 50.5 deaths per 100,000 people, which was significantly above—in fact, nearly five times higher than—the overall population rate of 10.4 deaths per 100,000 people. The 2019 rate for American Indian and Alaska Native people was also 64 percent higher than their 2006 rate of 30.8 deaths per 100,000 people, representing the largest increase among racial and ethnic groups."


Since 2006, all age categories of U.S. adults have experienced significant increases in alcohol-involved death rates - except for young adults (age 18-24), whose rates remained statistically unchanged. When categorized by sex, death rates from alcohol-involved causes for both males and females have increased. Rates have been consistently higher among males, but since 2006, females have been gradually closing the gender gap. Alcohol-involved death rates have also increased across all levels of urbanization. In 2019, rural areas had the highest alcohol-involved death rate.