Following the sponsorship of a new NHS Primary Care Gambling Service (PCGS) which opened in London, GamCare will continue to help those affected by problem gambling.
The new programme would provide problem gamblers with access to a multidisciplinary network of mental health professionals, GPs, GamCare therapists and clinicians. These will also work with GPs to raise understanding of problem gambling, providing advice about how problem gamblers can be diagnosed and assisted.
Starting in South East London (Lambeth, Southwark, Lewisham, Bexley, Bromley and Greenwich), there is a timetable for further expansion of the service in the coming months.
The PCGS will focus on treating problem gamblers alongside the National Gambling Treatment Service, with GamCare having established a ‘integrated care pathway.’
The PCGS, which is sponsored by GambleAware, is also establishing a Competency Framework for gambling treatment in primary care.
The proposed curriculum will set out the expertise and knowledge required in this area for professionals and is a project being carried out in collaboration with the Royal College of General Practitioners.
NHS General Dr Clare Gerada will be in charge of London’s primary care service, who commented on the launch: “There is evidence that many people who have problems related to gambling are in contact with their GP, but don’t necessarily talk about their gambling. We will be exploring how to identify them, and how to help them get access to the treatment that is right for them. We know from other areas of work that people value the option of getting treatment in primary care settings.”