Skin Cancer Awareness Campaign

In Autumn 2010 Anglia Cancer Network carried out a health campaign targeting melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer. Anglia, as a region, has a higher rate of skin cancer than England as a whole. As part of the campaign Anglia Cancer Network urged anybody who has noticed a new or existing mole, which is changing size, shape or colour to get themselves checked out for this potentially lethal but curable condition.

There are around 550 cases of malignant melanoma each year in Anglia, with an average of 40 men over the age of 50 across the region every year.

Dr Rory Harvey, Medical Director of the Network said "These statistics show that melanoma skin cancer is a very real danger in Anglia. Melanoma skin cancer kills, and we want to get the message across that this is a disease which can be prevented and, if caught early, can be cured. If you have any doubts at all, see your doctor; a few minutes spent getting yourself checked out now, could prevent a life-threatening illness.

Skin Cancer can affect anyone, but more deaths occur in men than women, as well as those who spend a lot of time in the sun either for work or pleasure. Men over 50 sometimes don't realise the danger of exposure to the sun on holiday or in the garden and so don't protect themselves with appropriate clothing and suncream. If that applies to you, check for some of the tell tale signs highlighted above, and go to your GP with any concerns as soon as you can.

Skin cancers are commonly associated with excessive amounts of sun exposure and with burning, both on holiday and at home. Outdoor workers are also particularly at risk from two other types of skin cancer, squamous cell and basal cell carcinoma; outdoor workers are exposed to 400x the amount of ultraviolet radiation compared with office workers.

Men over 50 are particularly encouraged to check themselves out and seek follow up advice if needed. In a national context, malignant melanoma rates in Britain have quadrupled over the last 30 years; due largely, experts believe, to cultural and lifestyle changes.

Reports evaluating the campaign are available.  The print design materials used by the campaign are available for others to use. 

Further information is available www.skincancerkills.org