Problem Gambling Within a Chinese Speaking Community

J Gambl Stud. 1998 Winter;14(4):359-380. doi: 10.1023/a:1023073026236.


The purpose of this study was to obtain preliminary data on pathological gambling rates within a metropolitan Chinese community to determine if more costly extensive epidemiological surveys were justified. Two thousand survey questionnaires were distributed to parents through children attending a local Chinese speaking school. A response rate of 27.4% was obtained. Over a quarter of respondents were born overseas in either Mainland China or Hong Kong. Results indicated that gambling was not a popular activity with 60.0% of respondents stating that they never gambled. Of those who gambled, a third of respondents identified lotto as the preferred form. Using a Chinese translation version of the SOGS and a cut-off score of 10, a prevalence estimate of 2.9% for pathological gambling was found with males showing a higher rate (4.3%) as compared to females (1.6%). Respondents reporting a prior history of gambling in their country of origin were more likely to be classified as probable pathological gamblers. Despite the use of a sample of convenience, changes to the wording of two items in the Chinese translation of the SOGS and the possibility of false positive cases in the present study, it is concluded that further research into problem gambling in this community should be undertaken.