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J Prim Prev. 2008 Jan;29(1):37-55. doi: 10.1007/s10935-008-0126-z.

Preventing the incidence and harm of gambling problems.

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University of California, 760 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1759, USA.


An increase in prevalence of problem gambling and gambling-related costs to the individual, family, and community are accompanying the spreading availability of venues in which to gamble. This highlights the need for effective educational programs, media campaigns, consumer protection, and public policy aimed at preventing increased incidence of problematic gambling behavior. This review explores prominent models of prevention including the risk and protective factors model, levels-of-prevention, and the public health perspective and illustrates each model's power to facilitate efforts toward preventing gambling problems. The current state of problem gambling prevention research and practice is delineated and future directions for policy are made. EDITORS' STRATEGIC IMPLICATIONS: Researchers and policymakers will benefit from the review and set of recommendations and also the detailed supplemental online content, in the form of six helpful Appendixes related to gambling prevention resources and materials.

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