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Published January 29, 2019

Understanding compulsive gambling through education

Innovative workshops address gambling addiction

Kathleen Conroy, clinical assistant professor from the Department of Counseling, School and Educational Psychology, along with others from five professional organizations, have created a training program on the latest gambling addiction research and resources. For nearly 20 years, Conroy has been working in the gambling recovery field and educating others on gambling.

Conroy has also joined gambling experts from across New York State to conduct the training. Health professionals participate in innovative two-day workshops to learn how to treat compulsive gamblers and those affected by their addiction. The workshops are offered through the New York Problem Gambling Training Partnership, which also provides continuing education.

“We want to give clinicians a way to learn about the basics of gambling problems,” said Conroy. Through the workshops, licensed health professionals such as social workers, mental health counselors, marriage and family therapists, psychoanalysts and other professional counselors receive free and certified training on the basic assessment and treatment of gambling disorders.

Conroy notes that problem gambling recovery requires easy access to professionally trained health professionals and that people who realize they have a problem, don’t know where to go for help. Conroy adds that one of her goals for the workshops is to build a referral list of licensed or certified professionals across the state who are qualified to treat problem gambling.

“I am very passionate about trying to get the help needed to be available to everyone,” said Conroy. “The biggest goal for the training workshops is to provide awareness and education. Gambling is a silent addiction that is often misunderstood.”

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