Alcohol and energy drink use in Victoria

Investigators: Amy Pennay, Dan Lubman, Peter Miller, Belinda Lloyd

There is a small, but growing body of international research demonstrating that young people are increasingly using alcohol in combination with energy drinks, particularly in licensed venues. Early research has also shown that combining alcohol and energy drinks is associated with more harm than consuming either beverage in isolation.

The aims of this project are to:

  • Explore alcohol and energy drink consumption patterns among consumers.
  • Explore the physical and social contexts in which alcohol and energy drinks are consumed in combination.
  • Explore the risks and harms associated with concurrent alcohol and energy drink consumption.
  • Examine the challenges that concurrent alcohol and energy drink interactions pose for venue management and emergency services.
  • Detect the number of ambulance attendances where alcohol and energy drinks are involved.
  • Investigate the patterns of use and harms of alcohol and energy drinks via case studies of ambulance data.

 

The methods used to collect data for this project include:

  1. sessions of observation in licensed venues in Geelong and Melbourne (over a period of twelve months
  2. in-depth interviews with twenty five regular consumers of alcohol and energy drinks
  3. in-depth interviews with twenty five ‘key informants’ such as venue managers, paramedics, police and alcohol policy maker
  4. re-analysis of twelve months of ambulance data to explore the incidence of energy drinks or caffeine among primary alcohol presentations
  5. review of specific incidents of harm related to alcohol and energy drinks through case studies identified in the ambulance dataset

Contact: Dr Amy Pennay

Email: a.pennay@latrobe.edu.au
Phone: +61 (3) 9479 8725