# Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI)

Below are a number of statements that describe the consequences of gambling. Please indicate how often you have experienced the following consequences in the past 12 months:

0 = Never1 = Sometimes2 = Most of the Time3 = Almost Always
 
0
1
2
3
  1. Have you bet more than you could really afford to lose?
0
1
2
3
  1. Have you needed to gamble with larger amounts of money to get the same feeling of excitement?
0
1
2
3
  1. When you gambled, did you go back another day to try to win back the money you had lost?
0
1
2
3
  1. Have you borrowed money or sold anything to get money to gamble?
0
1
2
3
  1. Have you felt that you might have a problem with gambling?
0
1
2
3
  1. Has gambling ever caused you any health problems, including stress or anxiety?
0
1
2
3
  1. Have people criticized your betting or told you that you had a gambling problem, regardless of whether or not you thought it was true?
0
1
2
3
  1. Has your gambling caused any financial problems for you or your household?
0
1
2
3
  1. Have you felt guilty about the way you gamble or what happens when you gamble?
0
1
2
3

About the measure

Create a score by adding the values of each item:

  • 0 indicates no risk/non-problem gambling
  • ≤2 indicates low risk
  • 3-7 indicates moderate risk
  • ≥8 indicates high risk

Clients that have a PGSI score ≥3 should move to Step 2 to perform a brief intervention.

For clients with no or low risk of problem gambling, provide positive affirmations and personalized feedback. For example,

"Thank you for your openness in answering these questions. Your answers suggest that you are at low risk of developing a gambling problem. It's clear that you are gambling in a way that is consistent with your goals."

Measure Characteristics

  • Sensitivity = 0.91
  • Specificity = 0.86
  • Positive predictive value = 0.49
  • Negative predictive value = 0.98
  • A sensitivity of 91 per cent suggests that the PGSI detects 91 per cent of people with problem gambling (true positives) but that nine per cent go undetected (false negatives).
  • A specificity of 86 per cent suggests that the PGSI correctly reports 86 per cent of people without problem gambling as negative (true negatives) but that 14 per cent without problem gambling are incorrectly identified as positive (false positives).
  • A positive predictive value of 0.49 suggests that 49 per cent of people who screen positive on the PGSI will be identified as a problem gambler.
  • A negative predictive value of .98 suggests that 98 per cent of people who screen negative on the PGSI will be correctly identified as a non-problem gambler.