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Australian Nurses Trained to Recognise Gambling Addicts

28 August 2002

AUSTRALIA – As reported by the (Australia) Herald Sun: "The state's mother and infant nurses are to be trained to recognise gambling addicts when they visit homes for baby check-ups.

"Health Minister John Thwaites will today unveil a proposal to train maternal and child health nurses to identify problem gamblers and direct them to help.

"All Victorian mothers are visited at home by one of the state's 630 maternal and child health nurses in the first 10 days after giving birth.

"…Nurses check the baby's health and development, and ensure the mother is coping with breast-feeding and parenting.

"Mr Thwaites's spokeswoman, Ilsa Colson, said: `They are a group that obviously have access to families at a time they have just undergone a significant change, i.e. having a baby, and may be open to advice or intervention if they are having problems with other areas of their lives.'

"Women or family members with gambling problems would be referred to government-funded Gambler's Help services.

"…While the document says training will proceed, Ms Colson said yesterday the plan was yet to receive the final go-ahead…"

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