Iowa officials are taking part in activities all this week as part of “National Problem Gambling Awareness Week.” Frank Biagoli of the Iowa Gamblers Treatment Program says the week is designed to let people know there’s help available, locally, and nationally.He says there’s a new website at www.npga.org that has fact sheets, brochures and screening tools. Biagoli says one of the screening tools on the website can let you know if you might me a problem gambler. He says it has two questions on it: “Have you ever felt the need to bet more and more money? And: “Have you ever had to lie to people important to you about how much you gambled?” He says if you answer “yes” to one or both of the questions, then you need further assessment. Biagoli says some people turn themselves in to the Iowa program, while others are directed to help by families and friends.He says it’s a combination of both that get people to call 1-800-BETSOFF or visit the website at www.1800betsoff.org to see if they need help. He says the good news is the help does work. He says people who commit to a program show success, so this is also a celebration of the people who’ve overcome their gambling problem. Biagoli says there are around 60-thousand Iowans who’re problem gamblers — and he says there are thousands of others who are impacted by the gamblers.
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