Gambling During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Experiences of Risks and Change Among Finnish Gamblers
Keywords:COVID-19, gambling, risks, gambling harms, public health
This brief report presents results on how gamblers have experienced risks and change during the exceptional situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The study is based on online questionnaires collected by the University of Helsinki and the Finnish Association for Substance Use Prevention (N = 586). Results show that the reduced availability of gambling in the Finnish context has limited its total consumption. The risk of gambling-related harms has therefore become less pressing during the pandemic. Although gambling is a public health risk in addition to being a harmful activity for the individual, the policy measures during the pandemic have revealed that, at a societal level, the risk of infection with COVID-19 was perceived as being a more serious problem than was the risk of gambling harms.
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