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Result 1: Improved health status for New Mexicans

P003: Alcohol-related death rate per 100,000 population

Current Value

66.0 per 100,000



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Story Behind the Curve

  • New Mexico has the highest alcohol-related death rate in the nation.
  • Alcohol-related deaths include 54 conditions ranging from alcohol-related motor vehicle traffic crash deaths and alcohol liver disease to alcohol poisoning and some cancers. Combined, alcoholic liver disease and cirrhosis make up more than a third of alcohol-related death in New Mexico.
  • Four people die of alcohol-related causes every day in New Mexico and the rate of alcohol-related mortality is increasing.
  • The 2016 alcohol-related death rate for New Mexico was 66.0 per 100,000 population.
  • Alcohol-related death is caused by excessive alcohol consumption, including binge drinking and heavy drinking.
  • The New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) depends on partnerships with other state agencies, health care providers, community groups, and community and tribal health councils to expand our reach. These stakeholders are key to turning the curve on alcohol-related mortality.


  • NM Department of Transportation 
  • NM Human Services Department 
  • NM Children, Youth and Families Department
  • NM Department of Finance and Administration 
  • Health councils
  • Santa Fe Prevention Alliance
  • McKinley County DWI Planning Council
  • Rocky Mountain Youth Corps
  • Hands Across Cultures
  • Gallup Share and Care
  • Partners for Community Action
  • Clinical groups
  • Navajo Nation
  • Bernalillo County, Office of Health and Social Services

What Works

  • Regulate alcohol outlet density.
  • Increase alcohol screening and brief intervention.
  • Increase the price of alcohol.
  • Decrease the hours alcohol is sold.


  • Collect, analyze, and interpret public health surveillance data on excessive alcohol and related harms and on policy and environmental strategies to address it. 
  • Disseminate scientific findings on excessive alcohol use and related harms to stakeholders and public. 
  • Provide scientific support to health department and external partners to help plan and evaluate evidence-based strategies for preventing excessive alcohol use and related harms. 
  • Respond to inquiries on excessive alcohol use and related harms from stakeholders and public.
  • Provide technical assistance to public health partners on effective approaches for monitoring and reporting findings on excessive alcohol use and related harms. 
  • Implement evidence-based strategies to reduce alcohol-related harm, such as those recommended by the Community Preventive Services Task Force  and the United States Preventive Services Task Force.

Action Plan

The NMDOH Epidemiology and Response Division Substance Abuse Epidemiology Section will work to decrease the alcohol-related death rate to the FY 17 Target of 58.5 per 100,000 population by:

Q1: Collect, analyze, and interpret 2015 alcohol-related death rate for New Mexico. Completed
Q2: Disseminate alcohol-related death rate through Substance Abuse Epidemiology Profile. Completed.
Q3: Provide technical assistance to a minimum of three partners. Completed.
Q4: Collect, analyze, and interpret 2016 alcohol-related death rate for New Mexico. Completed.

FY17 Annual Progress Summary

  • In FY17 we conducted the first alcohol prevention survey of health councils to determine the number of health councils that include alcohol prevention in their plans and whether they would be interested in learning more about alcohol prevention.
  • Along with the tribal liaison, we presented “Alcohol Epidemiology in New Mexico” to the tribal health councils.
  • Because of this meeting, along with the tribal epidemiologist, we developed an “alcohol-related death” query for tribes within the NM Indicator Based Information System.

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Scorecard Container Measure Action Actual Value Target Value Tag S A m/d/yy m/d/yyyy