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One Decade of Self Exclusion: Missouri Casino Self-Excluders Four to Ten Years after Enrollment

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For more than a decade, casinos around the world have offered self-exclusion programs (SEPs) to gamblers seeking help with their gambling behavior. Despite the proliferation of SEPs, little is known about the long-term outcomes for gamblers who utilize these programs. The current study assessed the experiences of a sample (N = 113) of Missouri self-excluders (SEs) for as long as 10 years after their initial enrollment in the Missouri Voluntary Exclusion Program (MVEP). Most SEs had positive experiences with MVEP and reduced their gambling and gambling problems after enrollment. However, 50% of SEs who attempted to trespass at Missouri casinos after enrollment were able to, indicating that the benefit of MVEP was attributable more to the act of enrollment than enforcement. SEs who engaged in complementary treatment or self-help groups had more positive outcomes than those who did not, suggesting that SEPs ought to encourage and provide information about additional support and treatment options to participants.

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The authors extend special thanks to Christine Reilly, Christine Thurmond, and Andy Boudreau for their support and work on this project. We also thank the participants from The Missouri Gaming Commission’s Voluntary Exclusion Program who are the source of information for this study and the Missouri Gaming Commission for providing the dataset. Dr Nelson had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. The Port Authority of Kansas City, Missouri provided primary support for this research project through the Port Authority Problem Gambling Fund of the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation. The Division on Addictions also receives funding support from the following resources: bwin Interactive Entertainment AG, National Center for Responsible Gaming, St. Francis House, National Institutes of Health (i.e., NIDA, NIAAA), St. Francis House, Venetian Casino Resort, LLC, University of Nevada at Las Vegas, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling.

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Correspondence to Sarah E. Nelson.

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Nelson, S.E., Kleschinsky, J.H., LaBrie, R.A. et al. One Decade of Self Exclusion: Missouri Casino Self-Excluders Four to Ten Years after Enrollment. J Gambl Stud 26, 129–144 (2010).

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