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Bridging the Divide Between Current Binge Drinking Prevention and the Needs of Hispanic Emerging Adults

In the United States, underage emerging adults (UEAs) are at the highest risk for binge drinking and experiencing negative outcomes from doing so. Specifically, Hispanic UEAs are at a particularly high risk as their ethnicity is also a risk factor for binge drinking. However, current prevention methods in college settings may not be effective for this group.

A new article investigated this gap. While binge-drinking assessments such as the BASICS questionnaire are effective in white college populations, they may not be accurate in Hispanic UEAs. Hispanic UEAs face several risk factors, including perceived discrimination, gender roles of Hispanic women, and lower likelihood of attaining higher education.

As binge drinking is prevalent among Americanized Hispanic women, young adults who do not pursue higher education, and those who face discrimination, prevention efforts that exist must be tailored or reimagined to reach these groups. Many current tools are available predominantly to college students, and surveys such as the BASIC can potentially be integrated into future efforts in diverse populations.

Take Away: Hispanic emerging young adults are at risk for binge drinking, yet many existing tools may not properly address their needs. Factors such as perceived discrimination, differing cultural gender roles, and differences in higher education make this population different than the typical white, college-aged population that many efforts are targeted towards.

Petrova, M., Martinez Jr., C.R., Jean-Jaques, J., McClure, H.H., Pantin, H., et al. (2019). Mind the Gap: Bridging the Divide Between Current Binge Drinking Prevention and the Needs of Hispanic Underage Emerging Adults. Prevention Sceince. doi.org/10.1007/s11121-019-01026-0

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