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Safe in the Sun - Protecting children and young people from sun damage 10 June 2008

The Department of Health and Social Security Public Health Directorate are delighted to continue the Safe in the sun campaign, in partnership with the Isle of Man Anti Cancer Association. This popular and successful campaign is now in its sixth year, and the Directorate have considered all the latest evidence when choosing a client group who require special attention.

Up to 80% of skin damage occurs in childhood and cumulative exposure is directly related to non melanoma skin cancer in later life. The Public Health Directorate have chosen to support our schools, parents and carers in encouraging Reception class children to sun protect.

Eddie Teare MHK, Minister for Health and Social Security, will support his local school at Bride on 16th June, by presenting the children with sun hats and supporting information. This will enable the children, their Teacher and carers to ensure they have a Safe in the Sun summer term.

Angela Howland, Senior Health Promotion Officer said,

“Short intense periods of sun/ultraviolet exposure are experienced when we go on a winter or summer holiday, or when we use a sunbed or sunlamp. This type of exposure makes us more at risk of malignant melanoma, a rare but life threatening form of skin cancer, which is increasing in young people. We are working with Year 10 pupils to help them assess the risks of this type of sun exposure, in particular safer sunbed use.”

Angela Howland added,

“For the wider community we have fact sheets and information suitable for all ages and needs. The Public Health Team will be happy to direct the public towards the resources they need to protect themselves and those in their care, so that everyone on the Island can look forward to a Safe in the Sun summer.”

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