ROLLING MEADOWS, Ill., June 27, 2017 - Building on the success of the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association's SUNucate efforts, Louisiana became the sixth state to pass legislation which ensures that children can possess and use sunscreen while at school. With Governor John Bel Edwards’ signature, Louisiana joins the states of Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Utah and Washington who have also approved similar measures this year.
The law, which ASDSA supported throughout the legislative session, eliminates barriers prohibiting students from possessing and using over-the-counter sunscreen by exempting these products from requirements implemented by broad reaching ‘medication bans’, such as the need for a physician’s note or prescription. ASDSA thanks both the legislature and Governor for their support of the efforts to help protect children from skin cancer.
“The success that SUNucate has achieved in such a short period of time is outstanding,” said ASDSA President Thomas E. Rohrer, MD. “It is a testament of the need to reduce the risk of skin cancer, especially in our youth. We must continue the efforts to educate the public on the real risks associated with too much exposure to the sun and harmful UV rays.”
The impetus for SUNucate were raised by dermatologists, dermatologic surgeons and members of the media who noted that children were being required to bring a prescription from a physician in order to possess or use sunscreen at their school or camp (sunscreen is classified as an over-the-counter drug by the FDA). 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.
“Increasing access to sunscreen in our schools is an important step in the uphill battle against skin cancer,” said ASDSA State Affairs Chair Terrence Cronin, Jr., MD. “We must continue to be proactive in our efforts to mitigate the risks associated with harmful sun exposure.”
ASDSA has worked with multiple medical/health care organizations, patient groups and industry partners – such as the American Medical Association, members of the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention and the Personal Care Products Council – to show state legislators the need for this measure which will protect school-aged children. Encouraging states to allow for the regular and routine use of sunscreen at schools without a prescription is key to reducing skin cancer in the United States. To find more information on SUNucate visit asdsa.asds.net/SUNucate.
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With a membership of 6,100+ physicians, ASDSA is a 501(c) (6) association, dedicated to education and advocacy on behalf of dermatologic surgeons and their patients. For more information, visit http://asdsa.asds.net.
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