OPINION: Teaching about gambling harms in medical school — an opportunity

OPINION: Teaching about gambling harms in medical school — an opportunity

Article brief provided by The BMJ
  • Jenny Blythe and May van Schalkwyk, The BMJ
September 21, 2022 10:19 PM
Updated: September 27, 2022 10:30 AM
  • Jenny Blythe and May van Schalkwyk, The BMJ
  • United Kingdom
  • Commercial Casinos
  • Igaming
  • Sports Betting

The coroner’s verdict into the suicide of 24 year old Jack Ritchie, who had been affected by disordered gambling since his teens, not only concluded that warnings and information about gambling harms were “insufficient” but found evidence that, in the UK, “GPs [general practitioners] currently have insufficient training and knowledge to deal effectively with gambling problems . . . this was of particular concern given many gamblers affected are likely to contact a GP as their first attempt to seek help.”

In this regard, the recent introduction of routine screening for gambling harms through GP online consultation platforms is a welcome development. The Royal College of General Practitioners has also endorsed a postgraduate competency framework “to assess, treat, and manage problem gamblers.”