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Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN HL11888, tabled on 28 November 2018

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many problem gamblers they estimate are (1) under 18 years old, and (2) 18 years old or more, in (a) England, (b) Scotland, and (c) Wales.

Answered on

11 December 2018

Neither Government nor Gambling Commission holds data on the number of problem gamblers aged 18 and over or under 18.

The Health Survey for England and Scotland 2016 and Problem Gambling Survey Wales 2016 estimated the number of problem gamblers aged 16 and over in Great Britain as approximately 340,000, 0.7% of the population. Of these, approximately 280,000 were in England (based on 40 individuals identified as problem gamblers), approximately 40,000 in Scotland (based on 24 individuals) and approximately 20,000 in Wales (based on 29 individuals).

All estimates are rounded to the nearest 10,000 and due to the low prevalence of problem gambling among respondents to the survey have large confidence intervals. There is 95% confidence that the true estimate for the total number of problem gamblers aged 16 and over in Britain is between 250,000 and 460,000.

The Gambling Commission’s 2018 Young People and Gambling Report estimated that 1.7% of 11-16 year olds were problem gamblers, or approximately 55,000 if extrapolated to the population of Great Britain. This number is based on a survey completed by 2,865 children in schools in England, Scotland and Wales. Of these, 37 children were identified as problem gamblers: 30 in England, 3 in Scotland and 4 in Wales. Due to the low number of respondents it is not possible to provide robust estimates for the number of problem gamblers in each country.

All estimates of the total figures of problem gamblers in Great Britain should be treated with caution due to the low numbers of individuals on which they are based.