Medicine

World Health Organization officially recognizes 'burnout' as a medical condition

World Health Organization officially recognizes 'burnout' as a medical condition

At the 72nd World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, on May 25 (local time), the WHO unanimously agreed to adopt the 11th revision of the International Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-11), which includes gaming disorder as a recognized disease.

Its subsidiary organization, Korea Creative Content Agency, has joined the committee of 89 organizations opposing the application of ICD-11.

"We will do everything in our power to resist the domestic adoption of the 'gaming disorder, '" the committee announced in a statement.

The global video game industry has called upon the World Health Organization to reverse the decision, arguing that "gaming disorder" is not based on sufficiently robust evidence to justify its inclusion, and that the industry offers parental controls and game-education initiatives. The ICD-11, which is to take effect in January 2022, contains several other additions, including classification of "compulsive sexual behavior" as a mental disorder, although it stops short of lumping the condition together with addictive behaviors. It contains a chapter on mental, behavioural or neuropsychiatric disorders, which also mentions addiction to games.

People suffering from this disorder may have poor control over the playing time, raising the importance of games to such an extent that digital entertainment has priority over other vital interests and daily activities.

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The committee will hold a press event Wednesday at the National Assembly to outline its protest against the World Health Organization decision and introduce new measures to ameliorate the prejudice sometimes associated with gaming. The U.S. video game industry generated $43.4 billion in revenue in 2018, and an estimated 2.5 billion people play video games globally.

The World Health Organisation states that their decision to include Gaming Disorder comes from meeting and talking to "experts from different disciplines and regions".

"The WHO is an esteemed organization and its guidance needs to be based on regular, inclusive, and transparent reviews backed by independent experts", their statement reads.

The classification of Gaming Disorder is an important inclusion in the ICD-11, especially as the gaming community grows and gains more steam with every passing day.

The syndrome of burnout that has faced criticism over its legitimacy in the past has now been officially validated by medical health professionals for those seeking serious help for the condition.