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Minerva Medicolegale 2020 June-September;140(2-3):37-47

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4849.20.01795-2

Copyright © 2020 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

lingua: Inglese

Treatment of gambling disorders: a qualitative study

Claudia MORTALI, Adele MINUTILLO, Roberta PACIFICI, Luisa MASTROBATTISTA

National Center on Addiction and Doping, Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS), Rome, Italy



BACKGROUND: Most studies on risk factors, triggers and comorbidities associated with gambling disorder have been conducted using the principles of quantitative research. For an in-depth analysis of the phenomenon, it is important to collect subjective information that can enrich knowledge on the development of the disorder. Up to now, no qualitative investigations have been performed on Italian pathological gamblers in treatment for their disorder.
METHODS: Twelve structured focus groups were organized and carried out during 2019 on the national territory for a total of 115 gamblers in treatment.
RESULTS: The hot topics which emerged during the focus groups discussions were recorded by the external observer. Spare time, money, family, triggers, other addictions, gambling supplies and advertising were taken into consideration. It resulted that gamblers in treatment recovered the value of their time, emotional relationships and the ability to manage money. Gambling addicted individuals suggested some essential prevention measures such as timely access to treatment, support for debt reduction, facilitated access to services for women and young people with dedicated assistance and support programs, implementation of prevention and awareness measures, families participation during treatment process; reserved access for individuals with game disorders not shared with individuals with other addictions.
CONCLUSIONS: The discussions during the focus groups showed the interlacement between different topics and the interrelation of them with the life history of the gamblers. The new topics that emerged during focus groups discussions and suggested prevention resulted as particularly interesting, as well as the creation of specific pathways favoring women and young people access to treatment services.


KEY WORDS: Focus Groups; Gambling; Qualitative research

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