PlayChange is a new platform that focuses on helping gamblers who suffer from gambling problems launched by the Bavarian State Office for Gambling Addiction.
This platform developed in partnership with the German’s state ministry of Health and Social Care will provide online assistance via customer support speedily and anonymously.
The State Office will operate this new platform PlayChange for Gambling Addiction (Landesstelle Glucksspielsucht/LSG). PlayChange was developed over 12 months at the cost of €36000 and is accessible via desktop or as a mobile app.
Any addiction is something people do not like to advertise hence PlayChange allowing citizens to register anonymously. In creating a safe environment of anonymity, the Bavarian Government are hoping it will further encourage players with gambling addictions to contact a counsellor. Available via chat service, email, messenger or telephonic appointments.
Why was PlayChange developed?
PlayChange came about for several reasons. Firstly in light of the coronavirus pandemic, it has provided a way for problem gamblers to receive advice from professionals at a time where social distancing is still in play. Secondly, surveys conducted between 2011 and 2017 have shown there are an estimated 70 000 gamblers in the State that show signs of problematic gambling habits. It further indicates that there are over 33 000 gamblers who display severe behaviour consistent with Gambling addiction.
The LSG established in 2008 currently provides a variety of treatment options for individuals with an addiction to gambling. There are more than 70 points of contact throughout the State assisting the addicts and their families. It includes 22 specialist centres and has guaranteed funding of €8.7 million from the Ministry for the periods 2020-2023.
Any form of addiction is harmful and affects not only the gambler but their families too. Therefore, another platform to help players is a welcome addition. In particular, a State-funded platform as it aids and monitors behaviours anonymously. Furthermore, people who think they have a problem can get much-needed help from professionals.