(NEXSTAR) — You may have an idea of how much alcohol your community drinks. But recently released data helps illustrate which counties in Nevada are and aren’t prone to excessive drinking.
Earlier this year, the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute released its 2023 County Health Rankings and Roadmaps report, which is meant to raise awareness about factors that can impact health outcomes and disparities nationwide.
Researchers use numerous data points to determine the length and quality of life on a state-by-state basis. Among those factors is alcohol use, including reported excessive drinking.
To determine the rates of excessive drinking per state, researchers used self-reported data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance system. For the 2023 report, the University of Wisconsin used data from 2020 — the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Excessive drinking encompasses both binge drinking (four or more drinks on one occasion for women, five or more for men) and heavy drinking (eight or more drinks a week for women, fifteen or more for men).
Nevada had the seventh-highest percentage of adults self-reporting excessive drinking at 20%, tying with Kansas, Missouri, Oregon, Michigan, New Hampshire, Colorado, and Alaska (because of ties, Nevada also has the eighth-lowest percentage of self-reporting excessive drinkers).
Neighboring Utah has the lowest rate of excessive drinkers at 12%. In fact, all of our neighbors (except Oregon), have lower rates than us: Idaho and Arizona had rates at 17% while California’s was at 18%.
Overall, 19 states had an excessive drinking rate at or above 20%.
Wisconsin is home to the most self-reported excessive drinkers. Overall, 26% of adults in the state — which sports an MLB team named in honor of its beer brewing industry — self-reported excessive drinking.
While reviewing county-level data, researchers found that Douglas County had the highest rate of excessive drinking in Nevada at 24%. Five counties tied for second at 23%: Lyon, Washoe, Storey, Elko, and Pershing.
Mineral and Clark counties had the lowest rates at 19%.
The interactive map below shows the rates reported per Nevada county. You can view a nationwide map here.
The University of Wisconsin also reviewed the number of alcohol-impaired driving deaths per state and county.
Though it has a relatively low rate of adults drinking excessively (18%), California had the highest number of alcohol-impaired driving deaths at 5,185 between 2016 and 2020, according to data collected from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System.
While Nevada had a higher rate of excessive drinkers, it reported far fewer alcohol-impaired driving deaths during the same time at 435 — the 18th-lowest in the nation, just behind Connecticut at 432.
Roughly 27% of the driving deaths reported in Nevada during the time period reviewed involved alcohol, the eighth-lowest in the nation. Kansas, Mississippi, and Indiana tied for the lowest at 19% each. Montana had the worst rate at 46%, followed by North Dakota at 41%.
In Clark County, 26% of driving deaths — or 262 deaths — reviewed involved alcohol. It was Lyon County, however, that had the highest rate of driving deaths involving alcohol at 43%, or 18 out of 42 reported deaths.
Nationally, 27% of all driving deaths involved alcohol, according to the County Health Rankings.
“When consumed in excess, alcohol is harmful to the health and well-being of those that drink as well as their families, friends, and communities,” researchers noted.
A recent study published in the Journal of American Medicine found that more Americans are dying from alcohol-related deaths, especially women. Between 2018 and 2020, researchers say CDC shows mortality rates among men increased by 12.5%, Nexstar’s WPIX reports. Among women, that rate was almost 15%.