Gambling Disorder Screening Day: Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Did you know that only about 15 percent of disordered gamblers in the US seek treatment or attend self-help groups (Slutske, 2006)? However, nearly half of lifetime disordered gamblers received treatment for some other mental or substance problem (Kessler et al., 2008). According to the National Comorbidity Survey Replication, increased screening for emerging gambling problems in clients already in treatment might be an opportunity to prevent full-blown gambling disorders (Kessler et al., 2008).

That is why the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG) is continuing its support of Gambling Disorder Screening Day on March 10, 2015. Last year, theDivision on Addiction, Cambridge Health Alliance, a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital (Division), promoted the development of the first Gambling Disorder Screening Day.

The Division on Addiction reported that the 2014 screening day encouraged a number of healthcare providers to start screening their clients for gambling disorder. Some of these organizations found that up to 10.5 percent of their clients were at-risk for gambling problems.

The NCRG is supporting the Division’s efforts by making available theBrief Biosocial Gambling Screen, an evidence-based three-question screen, on a magnet suitable for posting on clinicians’ file cabinets. The BBGS magnets are available free from the NCRG. Please send requests to Sam Newcomer (

The Division is offering an array of resources for screening day. You can find the Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen in 22 languageshere. (Learn about the psychometrics of the BBGS (Gebauer, LaBrie, & Shaffer, 2010) ina previous edition of The WAGER.) If you have questions, and would like to conduct your own screening, please contact the Division

Have you ever screened clients with other disorders for gambling disorder? Tell us about your experiences below.


Gebauer, L., LaBrie, R., & Shaffer, H. J. (2010). Optimizing DSM-IV-TR classification accuracy: a brief biosocial screen for detecting current gambling disorders among gamblers in the general household population.Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 55(2), 82–90.

Kessler, R. C., Hwang, I., LaBrie, R., Petukhova, M., Sampson, N. A., Winters, K. C., & Shaffer, H. J. (2008). DSM-IV pathological gambling in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication.Psychological Medicine,38(9), 1351–60. doi:S0033291708002900 [pii] 10.1017/S0033291708002900

Slutske, W. S. (2006). Natural recovery and treatment-seeking in pathological gambling: Results of two U.S. national surveys.American Journal of Psychiatry,163(2), 297–302. doi:163/2/297 [pii] 10.1176/appi.ajp.163.2.297

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