Accessibility and Consumption of Alcoholic Drinks in Metro Manila Colleges and Universities

Paulo Ma. N. Pagkatipunan

Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, College of Medicine and
Philippine General Hospital, University of the Philippines Manila

Objective. Alcohol consumption of university students in Metro Manila was determined and compared to other countries in the region and in the West.

Methods. A survey of students from ten randomly selected public and private universities in Metro Manila was done.

Results. A total of 2,930 students participated, 46.1% from public schools and 58.9% were female. Of the total students, 81.6% had drank an alcoholic drink in their lifetime; and 15.6% drank beer, 22.5% drank wine and 11.4% drank distilled spirits before they were 13 years old. For the past 30 days, 30.2% drank beer, 30.8% distilled spirit and 18.7% wine; 16.9%, 7.4% and 19.7% binged on beer, wine and distilled spirits, respectively; and 29.1% got drunk. Five percent of the students had drank inside their school. Of those who drove any motorized vehicle, 28.9% drove when they had drank and of those who use prohibited drugs, 66.7% mixed the two. Thirty one percent said they tried to quit drinking in the past 12 months and 7.5% admitted they have a drinking problem.

Conclusion. Alcohol consumption of Metro Manila students approximates those of other countries. For policy and monitoring purposes, it is recommended that this survey be done regularly with a nationwide scope and compare this with other countries for best practices.

Key Words: college drinking, underage drinking, binge drinking