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MASS. RESEARCHERS TAKING LONG VIEW WITH GAMBLING RESEARCH

By Andy Metzger
STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE

BOSTON, JAN. 10. 2018....The relationship between roughly 3,000 Massachusetts residents and the expanding menu of Bay State gambling options will form a unique data set for researchers around the globe, and a top gaming regulator hopes it will eventually rank among the most historic scientific surveys.

The cohort study - which has cost around $3 million so far - is the only one of its kind in the world to begin collecting data on gambling behavior before casinos throw open their doors, according to Rachel Volberg, a professor at UMass Amherst and lead researcher.

Surveys conducted almost entirely before the opening of the state's first slots parlor in 2015 appear to show that Massachusetts had more new cases of problem gambling than other jurisdiction, according to Volberg, who presented some initial findings to the Gaming Commission on Wednesday.


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