States are learning on the fly about sports betting addiction

States are learning on the fly about sports betting addiction

Article brief provided by Stateline
  • Stephen Elliott, Stateline
March 25, 2023 12:38 PM
  • Stephen Elliott, Stateline

The states that have legalized sports betting are reporting record levels of wagering and revenues, but with that growth comes questions about gambling addiction and whether regulators and sportsbooks are doing enough to fight it.

Two dozen states have active online sports betting, and other states are on the verge of joining them. As legalized gambling spreads, state legislatures, regulatory agencies, addiction experts, sportsbook operators and sports leagues all say they are working to address gambling addiction.

Jim Whelan, a psychology professor who runs the Institute for Gambling Education and Research and the University of Memphis Gambling Clinic backed by the state of Tennessee, said that in the past, gamblers seeking treatment for addiction at his clinic were older and almost evenly split by gender.