New Zealand and Australia have the world’s highest rates of skin cancer, including melanoma.
Te Hiringa Hauora (Health Promotion Agency) is sharing the new Early Detection of Skin Cancer Information and Resources Toolkit, which can help general practitioners to communicate to patients the importance of getting any skin changes or moles of concern check early by a primary care practitioner to prevent skin cancer. The toolkit brings together resources and information from several New Zealand organisations:
· Health Promotion Agency/Te Hiringa Hauroa
· Melanoma New Zealand
· Cancer Society
An online version of the Toolkit can be found on the resources section at SunSmart.org.nz All of the resources are FREE to order. Links provided with each resource allow practices to go directly to the relevant resource owner and order copies of the resource for their practice.
The resources promote skin checks, with a particular emphasis on men aged 50 years and over. New Zealanders in this age group are the most at risk of skin cancer and men are twice as likely to die from melanoma as women.
Research has shown that historical behaviour (sunburn) increases current risk. The Melanoma Risk Calculator (included in the toolkit) is available to primary care practices in New Zealand to identify an individual’s risk.