The system of intervention adopted by Te Whatu Ora is based on a multi-modal approach and acknowledges the widespread impact of problem gambling on the individual and their family and affected others.


The Intervention Services purchased by Te Whatu Ora comprise a combination of service types including:

  • helpline and information services
  • brief interventions
  • full interventions
  • facilitation services
  • follow-up services.


Full details of outcomes, objectives and activities for each of the above services are contained in the following documents.

Public health

Primary preventions and programmes can contribute to strengthening a community’s capacity and readiness to advocate for healthy social, physical, spiritual and cultural environments.

Public health activities include:

  • promoting healthy public policy
  • developing personal skills and promoting responsible gambling behaviour
  • increasing individual and community awareness and action
  • creating supportive environments
  • strengthening strategic alliances, skills and knowledge
  • monitoring, research and evaluation
  • reorienting services and programmes


Te Whatu Ora has contracts with providers to deliver all or some of the above service delivery components.

Infrastructure services

These service lines are namely:

  • kaumātua consultation and liaison
    • to provide an environment that is culturally safe for Māori service users, their whānau and significant others, as well as those delivering the services.
  • workforce development
    • to support service staff to access appropriate training and workforce development opportunities and attend national and regional hui and conferences.
  • participation in research and evaluation
    • to support providers to participate in and support Ministry-approved research and evaluation processes.


The outcomes from the above will ensure that:

  • all problem gambling services will have the capacity, skills and relationships to work effectively and appropriately with and for Māori
  • the problem gambling workforce is well trained, motivated and supported to deliver effective, high quality, sustainable public health and intervention activities
  • the practices and theories of the Problem Gambling sector are informed by an up to date and sound evidence base.

National coordination

The coordination service is currently contracted through Hapai Te Hauora Tapui.

The NCS is a central point for disseminating key messages and information across the problem gambling provider sector, ensures problem gambling providers across the range of services are kept informed of significant developments, and assists collaboration among agencies involved in preventing and minimising gambling-related harm,

For more information refer to the Hapai Te Hauora Tapui website.

Education awareness

The Ministry have engaged the Health Promotion Agency to develop and lead the national problem gambling education and awareness campaign. 


The goal of the campaign is to increase the quality of life of New Zealanders by strengthening society's understanding, awareness of, and response to gambling and preventing and reducing gambling harm. The problem gambling programme also focuses on implementing targeted strategies to change behaviours that place people and communities at risk of gambling harm.


To find out more about the campaign go to the Safer Gambling Aotearoa website.

Problem gambling workforce

Te Whatu Ora supports workforce development by allocating a proportion of its funding to non-government organisations for workforce development. This allows problem gambling staff working for Te Whatu Ora-funded problem gambling service providers to put aside some time each year to undertake training and further develop their skills.


Currently our contract with ABACUS (Counselling, Training & Supervision Ltd) to provide support to clinical psychosocial intervention staff, and Te Kakano (led by Hapai Te Hauora Tapui) to train the problem gambling primary prevention public health workforce.


These services are integral to achieving our strategic objectives to develop a skilled workforce to deliver effective services to prevent and minimise gambling harm.


As part of the services, ABACUS and Te Kakano are responsible for:

  • commenting on emerging trends in the sector
  • identifying and/or analysing recently released research findings, and
  • updating providers on workforce development training opportunities.

Competency standards

Public health

Generic public health competencies have been developed by the Public Health Association of New Zealand.


The generic competencies for public health were developed to provide a minimum baseline set of competencies common to all public health roles across the public health disciplines, including the problem gambling public health sector.


We are exploring the development of specific problem gambling public health competencies that will build on, and align with, the generic public health competencies.

Intervention (problem gambling counselling)

The broader addiction treatment workforce has been reviewed to identify the essential knowledge, skills and attitudes required to deliver effective co-existing treatment services.


Work has been undertaken to identify a core set of common competencies, and acknowledge specialist skills required specific to unique addictions and to problem gambling.