Passing this bill will limit unnecessary exposure to ultraviolet radiation for young persons, which will help to reduce long-term damage to the skin.
Rolling Meadows, Ill. (PRWEB) June 18, 2013
The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association applauds Texas for enacting a bill (SB 329) that will raise the minimum age required to use an indoor tanning device from 16.5 years to 18.
The bill became law June 14 without the signature of Gov. Rick Perry (R), making Texas the fifth state in the nation to enact an under-18 tanning ban. California, Nevada, Oregon and Vermont already have enacted similar indoor tanning bans for minors. Nationwide, 34 states and the District of Columbia have enacted some level of youth access prohibitions to indoor tanning devices.
“The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association applauds Texas for enacting SB 329,” said ASDSA President Timothy C. Flynn, M.D. “Our members have expressed concerns at the alarming increases in younger patients being diagnosed with skin cancer – often times in advanced stages.”
The new restrictions in SB 329 take effect Sept. 1. Current Texas law prohibits minors under the age of 16.5 years from tanning indoors. Persons between the ages of 16.5 years and 18 are required to have in-person parental consent at the time of tanning.
SB 329 will help to significantly reduce a minor’s exposure to artificial sources of ultraviolet radiation – a leading cause of skin cancer, Flynn said. People who use a tanning device only once a year increase the risk of developing melanoma by 20 percent, while people who regularly use indoor tanning devices have a 74 percent higher risk of developing melanoma.
“As a dermatologist, this is a victory for public health in Texas," said ASDSA SANDS advocate Paul M.Friedman, M.D. "Passing this bill will limit unnecessary exposure to ultraviolet radiation for young persons, which will help to reduce long-term damage to the skin. I am hopeful that this bill will help maintain the momentum to push indoor
tanning bans forward in other states."
The bill – sponsored by Senator Joan Huffman (R) and Representative John M. Zerwas, MD (R)– passed out of the Texas Senate April 17 on a vote of 26-5 and passed the House May 14 on a 94-48 vote. The bill was signed by leaders of both bodies and sent to Gov. Perry on May 15.
In Illinois, HB 188, which would ban minors from tanning indoors, passed the House March 21 and the Senate May 20. The bill currently is awaiting the signature of Gov. Pat Quinn (D). Illinois currently prohibits minors under the age of 14 from using indoor tanning devices and requires teens ages 14 to 17 to obtain in-person parental consent for each tanning session.
About the ASDSA
The American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association (ASDSA) is the largest specialty organization exclusively representing dermatologic surgeons who have unique training and experience to treat the health, function and beauty of your skin. Dermatologic surgeons are experts in skin cancer prevention, detection and treatment. As the incidence of skin cancer rises, dermatologic surgeons are committed to taking steps to minimize the life-threatening effects of this disease. For more information, visit http://asdsa.asds.net