New Program Will Bring Skin Cancer Education and Screenings to Thousands Nationwide
May 30, 2017 (New York, NY) — The Skin Cancer Foundation is launching Destination: Healthy Skin, a new program designed to save lives by educating the public about effective sun protection for skin cancer prevention as well as the importance of early detection.
As part of the program, The Skin Cancer Foundation’s 38-foot RV, customized with two private exam rooms, will travel around the country providing free full-body skin cancer screenings along with educational materials and sun protection giveaways. Local dermatologists who have donated their time will conduct the screenings onboard the RV.
The 2017 program begins on June 5 in Cambridge, Mass., and ends on August 27 in Indianapolis, Ind., making approximately 50 stops along the way. The Foundation’s RV will spend two to three days in each community it visits.
Destination: Healthy Skin is a reinvention of The Skin Cancer Foundation’s Road to Healthy Skin Tour, which was active from 2008 to 2015. More than 21,000 people received free skin cancer screenings through the Tour. The Foundation’s 758 volunteer dermatologists identified more than 9,000 suspected skin cancers, including 350 suspected cases of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.
With this new program, the Foundation seeks to highlight the need for sun safety, regardless of activity or location, by visiting communities that represent various lifestyles. Destination: Healthy Skin events will be held in beach communities, mountain towns and urban, suburban and rural areas. A list of Destination: Healthy Skin events is available at DestinationHealthySkin.org.
The RV’s journey will be documented on the program website, the Foundation’s Sun & Skin News blog and social media channels so that people will be able to follow along, thus expanding the reach of the program beyond the communities visited.
“This is an opportunity for The Skin Cancer Foundation to deliver another tangible program to people right where they live. We can directly help thousands of people and reach millions more online,” says Deborah S. Sarnoff, MD, president of The Skin Cancer Foundation. “We’re grateful for the support we’ve received from our corporate and foundation partners as well as the dermatologists who are donating their time. We’re proud to team up with so many great organizations and individuals to deliver this very important public service.”
Skin cancer is already the most common form of cancer in the United States and incidence continues to rise. From 2016 to 2017, the estimated number of melanoma cases increased by 14 percent. New research from the Mayo Clinic reveals that between 2000 and 2010 the incidence of basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma (the two most common forms of skin cancer) increased drastically by 145 percent and 263 percent, respectively.
When skin cancers are found and removed early, they are almost always curable. That is why The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends that everyone visit a dermatologist annually for a professional skin exam, in addition to practicing monthly head-to-toe self-exams, looking for any new or changing lesions that might be cancerous or precancerous.
Dermatologists participating in the Destination: Healthy Skin program will be screening patients to identify the following skin cancers and precancers:
Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC): The most common form of skin cancer, BCCs are growths that arise in the skin’s basal cells in the epidermis (the outermost layer of the skin). BCCs often look like open sores, red patches, pink growths, shiny bumps or scars. They may itch or hurt.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC): This second most common type of skin cancer, which arises in the squamous cells in the epidermis, can spread to lymph nodes if left untreated. SCCs often look like scaly red patches, open sores or elevated growths with a central depression or warts. They may crust or bleed.
Melanoma: More dangerous but less common than BCC or SCC, melanoma develops from the pigment-producing skin cells called melanocytes in the epidermis and may become life-threatening if not detected early. Melanomas often resemble moles, and some develop from moles. Look for the ABCDEs of melanoma: Asymmetry, Border irregularity, Color variations, Diameter over 6 mm (the size of a pencil eraser) and Evolution (any change).
Actinic Keratosis (AK): If left untreated, this common precancerous skin lesion (typically a rough, crusty, scaly patch that may itch or hurt) can lead to squamous cell carcinoma.
What to Expect During a Skin Cancer Screening
The participant is given a brief form to fill out and is then shown to one of the RV’s exam rooms. After the person changes into a gown, the dermatologist examines the patient’s skin from head to toe. The doctor notes any findings on the form and makes recommendations for next steps, which may include a formal visit to a dermatologist for a biopsy. To make the most of a screening, the Foundation recommends that participants remove nail polish and makeup in advance, let the doctor know if there is a personal or family history of skin cancer and point out any spots that are new, have changed or cause concern during the exam.
The exam takes approximately 10 minutes. It’s best to arrive early, as screenings are provided on a first-come, first-served basis. At events where screenings aren’t available, staff will be on hand to distribute educational materials and Coppertone® sunscreen samples, including new Coppertone Whipped.
The Skin Cancer Foundation’s Destination: Healthy Skin program is supported by Coppertone®, Sunesta®, EMD Serono and Pfizer, Columbia Sportswear Company and Publicis Health. Additional funding is provided by the following organizations: All in For Skin, Colorado Melanoma Foundation, the Rona Jaffe Foundation and Tomball Health Coalition.
Editor’s Note: Interior and exterior images of the RV are available upon request.
About The Skin Cancer Foundation
The Skin Cancer Foundation is the only global organization solely devoted to the prevention, early detection and treatment of skin cancer. The mission of the Foundation is to decrease the incidence of skin cancer through public and professional education and research. Since its inception in 1979, the Foundation has recommended following a complete sun protection regimen that includes seeking shade and covering up with clothing, including a wide-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses, in addition to daily sunscreen use. For more information, visit SkinCancer.org.
Coppertone® is a leader in sun protection and is dedicated to championing a worry-free life in the sun for everyone. The brand is committed to transforming the suncare category and continually providing consumers with high-quality products unlike anything else on the market. Coppertone utilizes cutting-edge research from its Coppertone Solar Research Center to consistently innovate its family of sunscreen products and provide expert sun protection to all ages. It employs a robust process for testing the safety and efficacy of its products, so that consumers can be assured that their skin is protected when they use Coppertone sunscreens. Coppertone is distributed and marketed by Bayer. To learn more, visit coppertone.com.
As the pioneer in manufacturing customized retractable awnings and screens, Sunesta offers unmatched engineering for perfect performance. Since 1981, we have led the industry in technological advances, and continue this tradition of engineering excellence in all our products. Every component, feature and option is designed with this focus on innovation. Sunesta’s in-house experts partner with other component specialists and engineers around the world to ensure our awning systems offer best-in-class technology. We invented the process of computer-aided awning manufacturing, and our proprietary equipment and processes ensure precise customization with the industry’s fastest turnaround time. For more information, please visit www.sunesta.com or call 1-800-SUNESTA.
About EMD Serono, Inc.
EMD Serono is the biopharmaceutical business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany – a leading science and technology company – in the US and Canada focused exclusively on specialty care. For more than 40 years, the business has integrated cutting-edge science, innovative products and industry-leading patient support and access programs. EMD Serono has deep expertise in neurology, fertility and endocrinology, as well as a robust pipeline of potential therapies in oncology, immuno-oncology and immunology as R&D focus areas. Today, the business has 1,200 employees around the country with commercial, clinical and research operations based in the company's home state of Massachusetts.www.emdserono.com
Pfizer Inc.: Working together for a healthier world®
At Pfizer, we apply science and our global resources to bring therapies to people that extend and significantly improve their lives. We strive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development and manufacture of health care products. Our global portfolio includes medicines and vaccines as well as many of the world's best-known consumer health care products. Every day, Pfizer colleagues work across developed and emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time. Consistent with our responsibility as one of the world's premier innovative biopharmaceutical companies, we collaborate with health care providers, governments and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable health care around the world. For more than 150 years, we have worked to make a difference for all who rely on us. We routinely post information that may be important to investors on our website at www.pfizer.com. In addition, to learn more, please visit us on www.pfizer.com and follow us on Twitter at @Pfizer and @PfizerNews, LinkedIn, YouTube and like us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Pfizer.
Columbia, the flagship brand of Portland, Oregon-based Columbia Sportswear Company, has been creating innovative apparel, footwear, accessories and equipment for outdoor enthusiasts since 1938. Columbia has become a leading global brand by channeling the company's passion for the outdoors into technologies and performance products that keep people warm, dry, cool and protected year-round. To learn more, please visit the company's website at www.columbia.com.
About Publicis Health
Publicis Health is the largest health-oriented agency network in the world. A division of Publicis Groupe, Publicis Health manages top-tier agencies specializing in promoting innovative solutions in advertising, digital, branding, message delivery, market access, and medical communications. Publicis Health’s mission is to be the indispensable force for health and wellness business transformation through the alchemy of creativity and technology—for good. With more than 6,000 employees around the world, Publicis Health manages 15 agency brands through 60 offices located in 10 countries. Publicis Health brands include Digitas Health, Discovery Worldwide, Heartbeat Ideas, in-sync, Langland, Maxcess Managed Markets, PDI, Publicis Health Media, Publicis LifeBrands, Publicis Resolute, Publicis Touchpoint Solutions, Razorfish Health, Real Science, Saatchi & Saatchi Wellness, Tardis Medical Consultancy and Verilogue.