After agreeing to a new partnership with the Addiction Division at Cambridge Health Alliance, a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital, EPIC Risk Management has committed to deliver education on the issue of problem gambling.
The duo will work together to investigate the relationships between elite athletes and problematic gambling behaviours and will take place in parallel with the ongoing research partnership between GVC Holdings and the Addiction Division to study the online and retail players of GVC in order to better understand how to minimise gambling harm.
The research programme will analyse the current state of gambling and gambling-related problems among professional athletes, the correlation between gambling and gambling-related issues, and the awareness, experience and actions of key gambling and gambling-related issues.
As part of the research, a survey will be launched by the Addiction Division which EPIC has committed to implement through educational sessions at 14 locations across the US. GVC Foundation US will fully fund the education programme which will provide $2.5 million in funding over the course of two years.
EPIC Risk Management CEO Paul Buck said: “We are delighted to be working with Harvard Medical School on this groundbreaking programme with elite and up and coming athletes in the U.S.
“By working with elite sports across the U.K. and Europe we know that professional athletes are competitive and don’t like to lose, and this can lead to a higher propensity to gamble, and suffer gambling problems, than the general population.
“This program between EPIC and the GVC Foundation US will provide sector leading education and awareness to professional athletes across the leagues and the data collected in the sessions will be passed to Harvard for independent evaluation and research.”
Martin Lycka, Trustee of GVC Foundation USA and Director of GVC Holdings Regulatory Affairs, said: “GVC Foundation US is very pleased that the Division on Addiction of the Harvard Medical School has agreed to become the research partner to its groundbreaking educational program with EPIC Risk Management in the United States.
“Responsible gambling and sports integrity are weaved into the DNA of the sports betting industry – professional athletes are at the heart of the action and as a result need to be duly protected from the ills gambling may occasion. Gambling related education, based on scientific research, is absolutely key to achieving this objective.”
Research Director of Addiction Division, Dr Sarah Nelson said: “The Division is excited to begin work with EPIC Risk Management to examine gambling and risks for gambling harm in this potentially vulnerable population.”
Bill Pascrell, III, Trustee of GVC Foundation US and Partner at PPAG added: “Proper research on responsible gambling and the relationship that professional athletes have with sports betting is sorely needed in the gambling industry. By addressing the key behaviors and experiences of athletes, we’ll be able to help sports betting grow in a safe, sustainable way that benefits everyone involved.”
Delighted to be working with some of the worlds leading academics @Harvard @Div_Addiction on an innovative new elite sport programme in the 🇺🇸. We will be educating on the dangers of gambling and addiction, allowing better informed decisions, and Harvard will evaluate @epicpgc pic.twitter.com/9xkT7KUoew
— EPIC Risk Management (@epicpgc) June 23, 2020