A public health perspective for youth gambling

Abstract

The recent emergence of gambling problems among youth around the world is alarming. For those most vulnerable in our society, children and adolescents, problem gambling presents a serious public health concern. Our current knowledge and understanding of the magnitude of the problem and its considerable impact upon the well-being of youth compels us to respond in a timely and effective manner. A general public health paradigm to gambling, originally articulated by Wynne (1997) and Korn and Shaffer (1999), highlights the importance of such an approach. However, a conceptual model and framework to understand and specifically address youth problem gambling within a public health framework is needed. This article articulates a theoretical framework and model that will help facilitate the development, implementation and evaluation of a comprehensive, multi-level health promotion and prevention strategy for youth problem gambling.

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