People are being reminded that Ireland has one of the highest death rates from melanoma in Europe.
The Marie Keating Foundation has launched a new campaign urging people to be 'sun smart' when outside.
It says 90 percent of new skin cancer cases are preventable by taking safety measures when out in the sun.
Death rates in Ireland from melanoma skin cancer are one of the highest in Europe, and the rate of cases is on the increase, a number of startling facts released as part of the ‘Don’t Cook Yourself’ Skin Cancer Prevention Campaign launched by the Marie Keating Foundation today.
90% of new skin cancer cases are from avoidable UV damage and can be prevented by making SunSmart choices including wearing SPF 30+ sunscreen, keeping out of the sun at the hottest time of the day, wearing sunglasses and a wide brimmed hat and never using sunbeds.
“Skin cancer is the most common cancer in Ireland and we are unfortunately one of the top when it comes to deaths from melanoma in Europe. We are urging everyone to be SunSmart when they're spending any time outdoors, or barbecuing, under the sun.
"This campaign hopes to change mindsets and remind everyone that the Irish sun has to be taken as seriously as you would the sun on holiday in 'sunnier' countries," says Helen Forristal Director of Nursing, Marie Keating Foundation
With all of us spending more time at home this Summer and cooking outside on the barbecue, the ‘Don’t Cook Yourself’ campaign, kindly supported by Novartis, seeks to raise awareness around skin cancer, encouraging Irish people, and in particular men, to rethink the dangers of the Irish sun and change their behaviour, highlighting the need to take as much care of yourself as you do when you’re prepping your BBQ.
“I am proud to support this campaign that is trying to remind us that the Irish sun can burn just as quickly as the sun in Spain, Portugal or France. As part of my work as an oncologist and position as chair of the Irish Melanoma Forum, I am all too aware of the devastating impact melanoma can have. By wearing SPF 30+ sunscreen, avoiding the sun at the hottest time of the day, covering up and wearing a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses you can drastically reduce your risk of skin cancer. This is a year like no other and to help protect ourselves and others most of us are choosing to holiday at home this year but that doesn’t mean that we need to stop being aware of the sun’s powerful UV rays and ensure that even on cloudy days we protect our skin.” Paula Calvert, Consultant Medical Oncologist, University Hospital Waterford and Chair of the Irish Melanoma Forum
The ‘Don’t Cook Yourself’ campaign features a video by well-known Irish chef Donal Skehan.