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Military binge drinking

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The Institute of Medicine says outdated approaches to preventing and treating substance abuse, barriers to care and other problems hinder the Defense Department's ability to curb substance use disorders among military service members and their families.

About 20 percent of active duty personnel engaged in heavy drinking in 2008. That's the most recent year for available data.  

Binge drinking jumped from 35% in 1998 to 47% in 2008. Prescription drug abuse rates are low, but the rates of medication misuse is rising.  Two percent of active duty personnel reported misusing prescription drugs in 2002.  That is compared to 11 percent five years later in 2008.  

 

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