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Findings From the 2021 Survey of Health and Recreation in Washington State: Gambling Behaviors and Prevalence

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Marna Miller, Rebecca Xie - October 2022

In 2021, the Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA) conducted a survey of adults in Washington to better understand the prevalence of gambling and problem gambling. HCA contracted with WSIPP to conduct additional analyses.

WSIPP’s analysis found that fewer than half of respondents reported they had gambled in the past 12 months. Of those who had gambled, 3.5% were classified as problem gamblers. Statistically significant differences were detected in the prevalence of gambling and problem gambling among some different demographic populations (demographics collected include gender, marital status, ethnicity, age, education, military service, employment, type of insurance, and geographic region). Compared to those who gambled only in brick-and-mortar establishments, online gamblers were significantly more likely to be problem gamblers. Gamblers who self-identified as having problems with substance use, mental health, or other behaviors, were more likely to be problem gamblers than others not reporting these problems. Most of the population said they thought the harms of gambling outweighed the benefits. A similar proportion said the availability in Washington was fine—neither too available nor not available enough.

Report ID: 22-10-3901

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