In a recent article by the Huffington Post titled, "It's Time for the U.S. to Catch Up on Melanoma Prevention", I was astonished by how behind we are in the U.S. for educating the public on melanoma and how to prevent it. Countries like Australia where melanoma is an epidemic, are getting it right. Here are some note-worthy quotes from the article:
"This year Melanoma Monday (May 5) was one of the most successful ever in generating information and buzz around the important messages tied to melanoma prevention."
"Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays and the resulting cellular damage is a leading risk factor for developing melanoma -- and that risk factor is something we can control and reduce. The U.S. needs a comprehensive public health plan designed to reduce UV exposure and combat melanoma."
"While these state-level efforts to restrict access to tanning beds signal an increased public awareness of their dangers, the U.S. is still inexplicably behind countries like the U.K. and France, where nationwide under-18 indoor tanning bans are in place. Brazil has gone a step further and banned tanning beds for everyone, no matter their age."
"Catching melanoma early saves lives, but the U.S. does not have uniform melanoma and skin cancer screening guidelines. Unless people go out of their way to broach the subject with the family doctor or schedule a skin check with a dermatologist, it is unlikely that they will hear about the importance of skin checks."