The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) has urged employers to take care to prevent skin cancer caused among workers by exposure to the sun during Sun Awareness Week, which is currently taking place up to 12 May 2019.

The Week is run by the British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) and is part of its wider national campaign around skin cancer called Sun Awareness, which runs from April to September each year.

The campaign is overseen by the Association’s Skin Cancer Prevention Committee, comprised of leading medical professionals with expertise in skin cancer, vitamin D effects and public health messaging.

The aim of the Sun Awareness campaign and Sun Awareness Week is to raise awareness of skin cancer. The campaign is two-pronged and combines prevention and detection advice.

The first objective is to encourage people to regularly self-examine for skin cancer. The second is to teach people about the dangers of sunburn and excessive tanning, and to discourage people from using sunbeds, in light of the associated risks of skin cancer.

In addition to public education about the dangers of sunbed use, the BAD has also been involved in campaigning for legislation to regulate the sunbed industry and is continuing to push towards further and improved regulation.

IOSH has been promoting Sun Awareness Week as part of its No Time to Lose (NTTL) campaign to help prevent skin cancer caused by work-related exposures.

Work-related cancers claim 742,000 lives a year worldwide and the NTTL campaign calls on businesses to take action to tackle this figure.

See also our Q&A on Skin protection for employees from ethnic backgrounds.

Last reviewed 7 May 2019