UK's national health service opens gaming addiction clinic

midian182

TechSpot Editor
Staff member

As per The Guardian, the service is designed to help those aged 13 to 25 whose quality of life is being affected by the number of hours they spend playing games. Part of the National Centre for Behavioural Addictions in London, patients, who are referred by their doctors, can attend in person or have online consultations using Skype.

“Health needs are constantly changing, which is why the NHS must never stand still. This new service is a response to an emerging problem, part of the increasing pressures that children and young people are exposed to these days,” said Simon Stevens, chief executive of NHS England.

Back in 2017, the World Health Organization (WHO) started the process of recognizing “gaming disorder” as a medical condition and it was later included in the beta version of the 11th edition of the International Classification of Diseases. In May this year, it was officially added to the disease dictionary. WHO defines sufferers as being unable to control the onset, frequency, intensity, duration, termination, and context of their gaming habit, and giving increasing priority to playing games over other life interests and daily activities.

Earlier this year, Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said his company needed to take gaming addiction seriously and adopt countermeasures. This came after a UK inquiry heard from former addicts who spoke about the dangers of playing games excessively.

Yesterday, it was revealed that Epic Games is facing a class-action lawsuit for “knowingly” making Fortnite too addictive and failing to warn players that they may become addicted to the battle royale title.

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Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
I want to know if they have a program to INCREASE the addiction and if I'll be able to play while I'm in "Treatment" ..... :)
 

Damocles

TS Rookie
Guess it's too much to ask parents to monitor their kids playing time.
I agree. Touch of decent parenting regulation might not go far amiss. I drive for a living and every day I transport some mildly autistic lads to and from their special school and all they seem to be able to talk about with any authority is their computer games, which I accept may, under certain circumstances, help their condition but surely not to the extent that I can't help but overhear every day. Boasts of how many hours they spend on their X-Box/Playstation every night surely can't be conducive to improving their quality of life, I'm guessing. They don't have much in the way of what I would call "social graces" and I would think more human interaction would be the answer.
 
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ShagnWagn

TS Guru
"online consultations using Skype"

If they want to continue this, then why are they wanting these kids to look into another gadget/screen? They are already detached from reality.

Should they be using their game console for video conference? /s