Pro­mot­ing sun safety mes­sage

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS -

The balmy days of sum­mer are com­ing and it’s time to get Sun­Smart

New Zealan­ders have an easyto- use tool that tells them ex­actly when they need to pro­tect their skin from the sun.

The Sun Pro­tec­tion Alert pro­vides sim­ple in­for­ma­tion that is easy to act on and spe­cific to each area for that day.

Sun safety mes­sages such as ‘‘ seek shade’’ and ‘‘ reap­ply sun­screen’’ are in­cluded in the Sun Pro­tec­tion Alert and change reg­u­larly to re­flect weather forecasts.

‘‘It is im­por­tant not to un­der­es­ti­mate the power of the sun at this time of the year and to re­mem­ber that it’s not the sun’s heat that burns, but ul­tra­vi­o­let ra­di­a­tion,’’ Kath Blair, the Health Pro­mo­tion Agency’s Sun­Smart man­ager said.

‘‘Ul­tra­vi­o­let ra­di­a­tion is at its high­est be­tween Septem­ber and April, es­pe­cially be­tween 10am and 4pm.

‘‘It’s re­ally im­por­tant to slip, slop, slap and wrap – slip on a shirt or into the shade, slop on plenty of broad- spec­trum sun­screen of at least SPF 30, slap on a hat, and wrap on a pair of sunglasses.

‘‘There is an in­creased risk of sun­burn if we aren’t Sun­Smart. Sun­burn is a big con­cern be­cause it in­creases the risk of melanoma skin can­cer later in life.

‘‘About 300 New Zealan­ders die from melanoma skin can­cer ev­ery year.

‘‘ Skin can­cer

is

largely pre­ventable by tak­ing sim­ple mea­sures to pro­tect our­selves from the sun,’’ Blair said.

The Health Pro­mo­tion Agency has worked with MetSer­vice and Niwa to pro­duce a range of ways the sun pro­tec­tion in­for­ma­tion can be eas­ily ac­cessed by the pub­lic.

They in­clude hav­ing the Sun Pro­tec­tion Alert on MetSer­vice’s Towns and Ci­ties smart­phone weather apps.

The alert is also avail­able in daily news­pa­pers and on pages through­out the Towns and Ci­ties, Ru­ral, Marine and Surf sec­tions of metser­vice.com.

A ver­sion can also be in­te­grated into business web­sites or in­tranets.

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