GambleAware publishes new National Gambling Treatment Service report

GambleAware has published a new report, using data collated by ViewItUK, on the National Gambling Treatment Service.

The research revealed that nine in ten (90 per cent) of the 9,008 clients who completed treatment between April 2019 and March 2020 showed improvement on the PGSI scale, which is used to measure severity of gambling disorders. 

Additionally, among those defined as ‘problem gamblers’ at the start of the treatment three in five (60 per cent) were no longer placed in the category.

Marc Etches, GambleAware CEO, commented: “The publication of this detailed analysis, of the impact the National Gambling Treatment Service can have on people receiving support, is a significant milestone. GambleAware commissioned ViewItUK to independently collate and analyse output and outcome data, which will allow GambleAware to rigorously evaluate these outcomes on the basis of robust and comparable evidence.

“We are committed to informing the development of best practice and outstanding care for those experiencing gambling harms in Great Britain, and the data reporting system we are pioneering is designed to be made available to the NHS, Public Health, local authorities and other statutory and voluntary sector agencies to meet the needs of local communities.”

Another severity measure used by the services, alongside the PGSI score, is the CORE-10 scale, which is a survey used to monitor psychological distress. The researchers found for those clients that ended the treatment, their CORE-10 score reduced by an average of eight points, with 74 per cent classed as below the threshold of ‘moderate’ distress. For clients who completed their treatment, four in five (86 per cent) improved their CORE-10 score.

The report found that 90 per cent of referrals for treatment were self-made and that 50 per cent of individuals were seen within three days of referral and 75 per cent within eight days. It was also found that between 2015/16 and 2019/20 the proportion of clients completing scheduled treatment increased from 59 per cent to 69 per cent whilst the proportion dropping out of treatment decreased from 35 per cent to 24 per cent.

When examining the profile of the gamblers using the service between April 2019 and March 2020 the analysis found:

  • A total of 9,008 individuals were treated within the National Gambling Treatment Service and three quarters of clients (75 per cent) were male. 
  • Almost nine tenths (89 per cent) were from a white ethnic background and the next most commonly reported ethnic backgrounds were Asian or Asian British (five per cent), followed by Black or Black British (three per cent).
  • Clients had an average age of 34 years at time of referral, with 25 per cent saying they started problem gambling by the age of 19 and 50 per cent said it was by the age of 24.

Commissioned by GambleAware, NGTS is a network of organisations working together to provide confidential treatment and support for anyone experiencing gambling harms. This is the first time GambleAware have published a detailed report outlining statistics for the National Gambling Treatment Service.

To read the full report, click here.