Arizona Passes SUNucate, Protecting Kids from Developing Skin Cancer

Instilling the notion of sun-safe behavior in our youth is a key step in reducing the risk of skin cancer.

Model legislation developed by the Arizona Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery Society (ADDSS) and the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association (ASDSA) to ensure that students are protected from the dangers of the sun while at school and camp has recently been signed into law by Arizona Governor Doug Ducey.

The legislation, deemed SUNucate, was introduced by Representative Heather Carter and is designed to eliminate barriers that prohibit students from possessing and using over-the-counter sunscreen in schools and camps by exempting these products from requirements implemented by broad reaching ‘medication bans,’ such as the need for a physician’s note or prescription.

“Instilling the notion of sun-safe behavior in our youth is a key step in reducing the risk of skin cancer,” said ASDSA President Thomas E. Rohrer, MD. “As dermatologic surgeons and concerned citizens, we must work to educate the population about the risks of excessive sun exposure and how to mitigate them.”

The need arose after multiple concerns were raised by dermatologists and reports in the national media about students being required to bring a note or prescription from a physician in order to possess or use sunscreen, which is classified as an over-the-counter drug by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the United States Preventive Services Task Force both believe that children should have access to sunscreen and other sun-protective measures in order to reduce the risk of skin cancer.

“The state of Arizona has made a big step in the right direction by increasing access to sunscreens in…

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