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Public Health Agency and Cancer Focus Northern Ireland are promoting the Be UV Aware initiative

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PHAlogo Be UV Aware

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in Northern Ireland and accounts for over 31% of all cancers diagnosed. 4,095 people develop skin cancer each year and around 377 of these are malignant melanoma, the most serious form. Malignant melanoma rates have risen remarkably over the past 30 years, from an average of 103 cases per year in the mid-1980s, to 377 cases each year at present.

As summer approaches the Public Health Agency and Cancer Focus Northern Ireland are promoting the Be UV Aware initiative to remind people to be ultraviolet (UV) radiation aware and take appropriate care in the sun according to the UV level. This is especially important for people enjoying outdoor sports.

The Solar UV Index shows how much solar radiation is reaching us from the sun and how careful we need to be. UV levels vary with the seasons and time of day, but when the UV index is three or above we need to protect our skin and eyes. So it's important to know what the UV index is going to be throughout the day. Check the UV index forecast at www.metoffice.gov.uk/uv

In Northern Ireland we are exposed to significant levels of UV radiation between March and October, even on cool or overcast days. The UV rays from the sun are particularly strong around the middle of the day, from 11am to 3pm.

The Be UV Aware initiative highlights the need to take care if spending time outdoors through work, sports or leisure, either at home or abroad and to take the necessary precautions in the sun – seek shade, cover up, wear a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen – when the UV index is three or above.

Please raise awareness at your club by circulating this message to your members and if possible please display print copies of the attached information posters  
For more information or for print copies of the information posters please do not hesitate to contact the skin cancer prevention co-ordinator at marbethferguson@cancerfocusni.org  or 028 90680784