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The BBC reported that 41% of forces fail to include gambling, a Freedom of Information request shared exclusively with BBC Radio 4's File on 4 programme reveals.
Screening for drug or alcohol addiction and mental-health problems is standard practice among police forces.</>
According to the BBC report, the National Police Chiefs Council said it was working to improve screening.
This formal screening process, by officers at the police station, can also form part of the arrested person's mitigation if they go to court.
Failing to include gambling addiction is leading to a lack of treatment and, in turn, further offending, critics say.
The Ministry of Justice told BBC News: "We understand the costs of gambling addiction to society, which is why prisoners are assessed and can be referred to treatment services when needed.
"New guidance has also been put in place for staff, so they are better equipped to deal with gambling addicts. "We continue to work with groups across the criminal-justice system, to explore what further treatment for gambling addiction should be put in place for those in prison or on probation."