Join date: Jun 5, 2022


Until 1 October 2019 doctors were under no formal duty to notify a coroner of a person’s death or, if they did, to include any particular information. On that day new Regulations came into force, the Notification of Deaths Regulations 2019,341 which were made under the Coroners and Justice Act 2009. Regulation 3(1) requires doctors to notify senior coroners in writing of any death where the doctor “suspects that [a] person’s death was due to … self-harm”. Regulation 4 lists the details of the information a doctor is required to supply, including the circumstances which apply to the death (such as self-harm)

Doctors must provide any further information they consider to be relevant, and could therefore state that they believe the death from self-harm was gambling-related; but they are not under an obligation to do so. If they were required to do so, each of the 88 coroners’ offices would accumulate a record of the deaths where doctors suspect that the death was gambling-related.

These records could be collated by the Ministry of Justice. We accept that there might still be defects. The records would not list the findings of coroners, but the opinions of doctors, who might apply different criteria, or might not discover that a suicide was gambling-related. Nevertheless we believe such records would be a great deal better than the current lack of any formal record, and should provide more accurate estimates of the numbers of suicides which are gambling-related.


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