It also includes 'hazardous gaming'.
The World Health Organization has laid the groundwork for doctors to treat gaming addiction as a disease. The group yesterday announced that its 11th International Classification of Diseases has been finalized and includes the addition of gaming to its section on addictive disorders.
The WHO released a draft of the ICD-11 including the gaming disorder diagnosis months ago. Despite some pushback and criticism--the Entertainment Software Association said the move "recklessly trivializes real mental health issues like depression and social anxiety disorder"--the gaming disorder entry remains in the ICD-11.
The ICD-11 says a gaming disorder is marked by a pattern of gaming where the player loses control over how, when, or how long they play, where they prioritize gaming over other interests and daily activities, and where they continue to game despite negative consequences.
The proposal to include 'gaming disorder' in ICD-11 was first made in January of this year, but has now been included in the latest draft which is currently in open consultation before the WHO General Assembly formally approves the list in May 2019.
The ICD-11 also includes a 'hazardous gaming' entry, which describes a pattern that "increases the risk of harmful physical or mental health consequences to the individual or to others around this individual.
An international coalition of trade bodies has warned that the World Health Organisation's decision to include 'gaming disorder' in the 11th International Compendium of Diseases will have serious implications for the games industry.
Arguing that the inclusion "will create moral panic and may lead to abuse of diagnosis", the coalition urged the WHO to reconsider "mounting evidence" against its decision.
The statement, issued from the European Games Developer Federation, has been backed by Entertainment Software Association of Canada, the Brazilian Union of Video and Games, Interactive Entertainment South Africa, Interactive Games & Entertainment Association, Interactive Software Federation of Europe, Korea Association of Game Industry, and the Entertainment Software Association.
"Video games across all kinds of genres, devices and platforms are enjoyed safely and sensibly by more than two billion people worldwide, with the educational, therapeutic, and recreational value of games being well-founded and widely recognised," said the statement.