Health / Finance

Gaming prevalence study gets underway (09/09/21)

NB 1386

Sept. 21, 2009

FREDERICTON (CNB) - New Brunswickers will be asked to participate in a telephone survey on games of chance, gambling and other related issues.

The survey, which will be conducted by MarketQuest Research Group Inc., will randomly select a representative sample of 2,800 New Brunswickers aged 19 and older.

This study was a commitment in the responsible gaming policy released by government in November 2007. It included the commissioning of a gambling prevalence study to examine the gambling habits of New Brunswickers, and issues related to problem gambling.

Health Minister Mary Schryer encouraged anyone who is contacted to participate in the survey.

"Participation is very important," said Schryer. "The valuable information collected for this study will be used to improve programs and services for all New Brunswickers. It will also help bring a cultural shift toward wellness and healthy living, and to empower individuals to better manage their own care, and seek assistance when it is needed."

Finance Minister Greg Byrne is pleased that this commitment in the responsible gaming strategy is being carried out.

"Our new responsible gaming policy has introduced the most significant changes ever undertaken in the field of gaming in our province," said Byrne. "The study is an important facet in gathering information on gambling activities in New Brunswick as we move forward in implementing the policy."

Four gambling-related prevalence studies have been conducted in the province to date. General population prevalence studies were conducted in 1992, 1996 and 2001. In addition, a prevalence study conducted in 2002 focused on substance use and gambling among New Brunswick adults 55 and older. The proposed study will build on the data collected in 2001.

MarketQuest Research Group Inc. was selected to conduct the study through a competitive request for proposals process. MarketQuest will conduct the survey, analyze the data and subsequently produce a report of the results. The telephone survey will be carried out between mid-September and mid-October. It is anticipated that the results of the study will be available in early 2010.

Programs to treat those with gambling addictions are offered by the Regional Health Authorities.

09/09/21

MEDIA CONTACTS: Meghan Cumby, communications, Department of Health, 506-457-4800; Marc Belliveau, communications, Department of Finance, 506-453-4138.

09/09/21