Proceedings of The 1st Uganda National Field Epidemiology Conference (Kampala, 2017)

Oral presentation

Trends of alcohol abuse using surveillance data from the Health Management Information System (HMIS) of Uganda

Cite this: Pan African Medical Journal - Conference Proceedings. Aug 2017; 1(1): 9. doi:10.11604/pamj.cp.2017.1.9.15

Submitted: 02 Aug 17   Accepted: 08 Aug 17   Published: 11 Aug 17

Key words: Surveillance data, Health Management Information System (HMIS), Uganda

© Steven Ndugwa Kabwama et al. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Corresponding author: Steven Ndugwa Kabwama, Uganda Public Health Fellowship Program, Kampala, Uganda (

This abstract is published as part of the proceedings of The 1st Uganda National Field Epidemiology Conference(UGANDA, )

Trends of alcohol abuse using surveillance data from the Health Management Information System (HMIS) of Uganda

Steven Ndugwa Kabwama1,&, Alex Riolexus Ario1, David Guwatudde2


1Uganda Public Health Fellowship Program, Kampala, Uganda, 2Makerere University School of Public Health



&Corresponding author
Steven Ndugwa Kabwama, Uganda Public Health Fellowship Program, Kampala, Uganda




Introduction: Uganda has the highest alcohol per capita consumption in Africa. Surveillance data was analysed to describe trends in alcohol abuse by gender, identify districts with most cases and describe trends of annual rates by region.


Methods: data was from HMIS 108 (inpatient), HMIS 105 (outpatient) forms. Total number of cases was acquired by summing age-aggregated cases by gender in both reports. Rates of alcohol abuse were acquired by dividing annual total cases by annual regional projected population.


Results: 57897 cases were reported between 2010 and 2014. Most were males 72% (1963). There is a steady increase in reported cases. All regions show increases in cases reported, the highest being central, western, northern then eastern. Kampala, Kabale, Arua, Gulu, Wakiso reported most cases. Higher numbers among males might be because of a higher genetic risk for disorders. Men are more likely to exhibit risk factors of disorders such as impulsivity making diagnosis simpler. Additionally, biological and social consequences among women may be deterrents to alcohol use. Increasing numbers of cases might be because of social acceptability of alcohol and aggressive advertising. Current legislation limiting alcohol use covers only manufacture and sale, is weak and poorly enforced. High numbers in central region might be due to higher numbers of health centers and population density. Actual numbers are likely to be higher as people with alcohol abuse rarely seek for help. Findings are subject to epidemiological weaknesses: healthcare access bias, referral filter bias, misclassification bias.


Conclusion: there is urgent need to address the increasing problem of alcohol abuse especially in central region. The national alcohol control policy should be completed and passed to address issues such as alcohol advertising, taxation and sale of alcohol to minors to limit access. Interventions to address alcohol abuse should be gender specific.

















The 1st Uganda National Field Epidemiology Conference (Kampala)

The one-day Field Epidemiology Conference took place on December 11th, 2015 at Golf Course Hotel, Kampala. At this conference, Fellows presented investigations and epidemiologic studies they conducted since they joined the Fellowship in January 2015. Through these investigations and studies, important public health problems facing the nation were unveiled and strategies to address them proposed. This conference presented opportunity for national and international experts to discuss and propose solutions. This was the first Field Epidemiology Conference in Uganda and was attended by important dignitaries from the key partner institutions including Ministry of Health, UN agencies, Embassies, University officials, representatives from districts as well as other national and international delegates.

Country: UGANDA

Dates: 11 Dec 2015

Venue: Golf Course Hotel, Kampala

Organizers: Ministry of Health and Makerere University School of Public Health


Contact person: Dr. Alex Riolexus Ario (