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Sunbed danger

Dear Sir

I have a lot of sympathy for the views of Patricia Reeves whose daughter died from cancer after using sunbeds (Star 3 August). The government clearly has public health issues to address now that the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified sunbed use with tobacco smoke in terms of cancer risk.

The Sun Smart campaign run by Cancer Research UK is a good information source. It offers evidence based advice about skin cancer and sun protection that you can trust. Sadly, the unregulated sunbed industry often gives incomplete or incorrect representations of the effects and dangers.

A new European Commission UV output standard of 0.3 W/m2 for sunbeds has just come into force but not yet in the UK. There are still some sunbeds out there with dangerous UV outputs of up to 0.9 W/m2. It is important that sunbed users minimise risk by asking for information about output levels at their tanning centre before they consider using them again.

Yours Sincerely

Eamonn Ward

Sheffield Green Party

Topics: Eamonn Ward, Health, Letters to the press