Florida Becomes Fifth State to Pass ASDSA’s SUNucate Legislation

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Governor Rick Scott signs ASDSA/FSDDS bill to protect children from sun exposure at school



Increasing access to sunscreen in our schools is an important step in the uphill battle against skin cancer.

Legislation supported by the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association (ASDSA) and the Florida Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery (FSDDS) ensuring that children are protected from dangerous sun exposure while at school was signed into law by Governor Rick Scott. Florida’s approval joins that of similar measures by the states of Alabama, Arizona, Utah and Washington this year.

The law, deemed SUNucate, 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 and the FSDDS thanks both the legislature and Governor for their support of the efforts to help protect children from skin cancer.

“Creating a culture of sun-safe behavior in our youth is an important part of how we can reduce the risk of skin cancer,” said ASDSA President Thomas E. Rohrer, MD. “As dermatologic surgeons, we must help the public understand the real risks of excessive sun exposure and how to mitigate them.”

The need for SUNucate was identified by dermatologists, dermatologic surgeons and members of the media who noted that children were being required to provide a prescription from a physician in order to bring 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.

“I am extremely proud to be a Floridian right now,” said FSDDS President and ASDSA State Affairs Chair Terrence Cronin, Jr., MD. “Increasing access to sunscreen in our schools is an important step in the uphill battle against skin cancer. We must continue to be proactive in our efforts to lessen 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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FSDDS, a 501(c) (6) association, advocates for Florida dermatologists and their patients to promote excellence in dermatologic care, ensure the highest standards for dermatologic practice and medical education, and to enhance the quality and availability of dermatologic health care to all Floridians. For more information, visit http://fsdds.org.

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Kristin Hellquist
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