The initial findings of a survey on the prevalence of gambling in Quebec have been released.
The study also deals with behavior problems associated with gambling. The study reveals that nearly 70 percent of Quebec adults report having bet or spent money on gambling during the previous 12 months. It also found Quebecers spend an average of $483 annually on gambling activities.
This survey was conducted between June and September 2009 throughout the province among 11,888 non-institutionalized adults over the age of 18. It constitutes the first stage of a project that will span a total of five years. These findings will support recommendations for prevention and treatment.
The study was led by researchers Dr.Sylvia Kairouz, director of Concordia University's Lifestyle and Addiction Research Laboratory and professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology and Dr.Louise Nadeau, co-researcher and scientific director at the Centre Dollard-Cormier, Institut universitaire sur les dépendances and professor in the department of psychology at Université de Montreal.
"Nearly 1.3 percent of the adult population is at moderate risk of developing a gambling problem, while nearly 0.7 percent - close to 41,000 Quebecers- could become pathological gamblers," says lead researcher Sylvia Kairouz. "The study found a higher proportion of video lottery terminal (VLTs) gamers among men and young people aged 18 to 24. They play more often and spend more substantial amounts of money. Some also reported increased problems associated with alcohol abuse or cannabis use."
The study also revealed a higher proportion of gamblers at risk of developing problems and pathological gamblers among VLT users and online gamblers.