In a noteworthy move, NHS England plans to double the number of its gambling addiction clinics from eight to fifteen, according to CEO Amanda Pritchard.
Adapting to Soaring Demand
This decision comes in response to a record surge in people seeking help for gambling addictions.
Last year saw a drastic increase of over 30% from the previous year, with 1,389 individuals referred to NHS for help. Echoing the urgency of the situation, Pritchard stated, “Record numbers of people are coming to the NHS for help to treat their gambling addiction, a cruel disease which has the power to destroy people’s lives.”
The new clinics are set to open in Milton Keynes, Thurrock, Bristol, Derby, Blackpool, Liverpool and Sheffield.
This initiative demonstrates the NHS’s ongoing commitment to adapt to new healthcare demands and meet emerging needs.
Bolstering Treatment Measures
These centres aim to tackle serious addiction issues using cognitive behavioural therapy, family therapy, support groups, and aftercare.
The specialist teams will comprise psychologists, therapists, psychiatrists, mental health nurses, and peer support workers.
The NHS anticipates treating up to 3,000 patients across the expanded network of 15 clinics, thus fulfilling its Long Term Plan commitment six months ahead of schedule.
In parallel with these measures, the UK government is revamping its gambling laws for the digital age.
The proposed statutory levy on the gambling sector’s profits, suggested in the recent white paper, aims to fund research, education, and treatment services, thereby replacing the industry’s current voluntary contributions.
NHS Aims to Double Gambling Clinics: Implications for the iGaming Industry
- Increased Scrutiny: With the NHS intensifying its fight against gambling addiction, the iGaming industry is likely to face heightened scrutiny, prompting operators to reevaluate their practices.
- Possible Regulatory Changes: The government’s focus on updating gambling laws may lead to significant regulatory changes for the industry, impacting the operation and marketing tactics of iGaming companies.
- Shared Responsibility: The proposed statutory levy on the gambling sector’s profits to fund treatment services signals a move towards the industry taking greater responsibility for tackling gambling-related harms. This could affect the profitability and corporate social responsibility strategies of these companies.
In a nutshell, the doubling of NHS gambling addiction clinics reflects the seriousness of the situation. As the industry faces potential regulatory shifts and shared responsibility for treatment costs, it must adapt to continue thriving in a changing landscape.