The proportion of problem gamblers seeking treatment has risen significantly over the last year, according to a new study from GambleAware.
In its annual GB Treatment and Support survey, GambleAware found that 63% of problem gamblers sought out treatment, advice or support in the last 12 months, compared to 54% in the 2019 study.
The new study also found a year-on-year increase of 43% to 53% in reported usage of treatment services, and an increase of 39% to 48% in support and advice among problem gamblers.
Barriers to seeking treatment for problem gamblers included concern around stigma and the perception that such treatment would be inaccessible, with 22% of respondents selecting the former and 15% selecting the latter.
Key motivations for those seeking treatment included knowing support was available via a particular channel (29%), awareness of the ease of accessing support (22%), and confirmation that treatment and support would be confidential (16%).
“It is encouraging to see a year-on-year increase in those classified as ‘problem gamblers’ seeking help, especially during the pandemic,” said GambleAware CEO Zoë Osmond. “These results will be used to help inform GambleAware’s new commissioning strategy as we continue our work to increase provision of and access to services.
“The significantly increased sample will allow GambleAware to better tailor existing support services according to local need and allow us to better support local authorities and health commissioners.”