During a debate at the American Medical Association's (AMA) annual meeting, doctors and addiction experts have strongly opposed to classify video game addiction as a mental disorder in the American Diagnostic and Statistic Manual of Mental Disorders. Many doctors argued that a discrete amount of gaming was actually healthy, and felt that further scientific study on the subject was necessary.
"There is nothing here to suggest that this is a complex physiological disease state akin to alcoholism or other substance abuse disorders, and it doesn't get to have the word addiction attached to it," said Dr. Stuart Gitlow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine.
The vote is significant considering that if video game addiction is classified as a mental disorder, people diagnosed with the proposed ailment could get insurance coverage to pay for treatment, the same way people treated with alcoholism addiction do.
However, the same committee that made the proposal backed away from its position, suggesting that maybe it would be better for the American Psychiatric Association to consider the change when it revises its next diagnostic manual in 5 years. The AMA committee will give its final recommendation to the 555 voting delegates, who will vote on the matter later this week.