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Advice to the Gambling Commission on a statutory levy

A paper by the Advisory Board for Safer Gambling advising the Gambling Commission on a statutory levy

  1. Contents
  2. Appendix 3: Research Council funded studies in comparable areas with costs

Appendix 3: Research Council funded studies in comparable areas with costs

Case study 1: Medical Research Council

Alcohol Harms: The relationship between alcohol consumption and cardiovascular risk - A life-course perspective

Award: £316,235
Start Date: January 2015
End Date: June 2018

Research type: Primary Research
Health Category(s): Cancer, Cardiovascular, Respiratory, Stroke
Contracting Organisation: University College London
Research Call: Research Grant


The relationship between alcohol consumption and cardiovascular disease (CVD) is complex and controversial. Meta-analyses suggest that those who consume alcohol in moderation have a lower risk of developing CVD than heavy drinkers and those who abstain. However, the majority of studies measure alcohol at only one point in time and therefore fail to take into account variation in drinking over time. This approach means that important transitions, such as from heavy drinking to abstinence or low-drinking are not captured.

This particular change has been put forward as a potential explanation for the apparent U/J-shaped relationship between alcohol and CVD, as it may be that that those classified as non-drinkers are actually former heavy drinkers who quit due to ill-health (referred to as "sick-quitters"). Jointly examining the relationship between longitudinal typologies of drinking and CVD improves understanding of the association between changes in alcohol consumption over time with respect to developing CVD. In doing so, our findings can be used to develop dynamic predictive tools accounting for repeat measures of alcohol consumption across the life-course and thus provide individualised/age-specific drinking guidelines.

We proposed using our existing infrastructure of 9 UK cohorts (sample size 59,397 with 163,710 alcohol observations) with harmonised alcohol measures, and with linkages to external outcome databases (mortality, GP, hospital records), to explicitly examine the role of alcohol consumption in the development of CVD using a life-course perspective.

Results: 10 publications (opens in new tab)

NIHR Policy Research Programme

Recovery pathways and societal responses in the UK, Netherlands and Belgium- REC-PATH

Award: £246,886.00
Start Date: July 2017
End Date: December 2020

Research type: Primary Research
Health Category(s): Mental health
Contracting Organisation: University of Sheffield
Research Call: Research Grant


Recovery models are well established in policy, commissioning and treatment practice in the UK, but have only begun to emerge in policy discourse in the Netherlands and Belgium. The aim of this project is to map pathways to recovery in populations engaging with different mechanisms of behaviour change for recovery - mutual aid (such as 12-step groups like NA), peer-based support, residential and community treatment, specialist treatment: maintenance and abstinence oriented) or through their own 'natural recovery' endeavours, at different stages of their addiction careers.

We will recruit populations in early (5 years) in these 3 countries and will track these individuals over the course of one year. The study will use mixed methods to assess recovery capital, social networks and identity, community engagement and societal responses, with a particular focus on gender differences in utilisation of each of our five pathways and trajectories to change.

We will also assess the client experience of policy and practice change on stigma, access to support and reintegration. To supplement this basic measure of change across different recovery populations, the study also includes qualitative elements: 1. A review of policy formation and development in each of the three participating countries and how its effectiveness is assessed 2.

A sub-sample of 30 people in each country completing an in-depth qualitative interview aligned to the second structured interview assessing their recovery journeys and experiences 3. A smaller qualitative group in Belgium using an innovative method called Photovoice to visually record their experiences of recovery pathways.

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Appendix 2: Areas of treatment, education and research related to gambling harms covered by a statutory levy
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