Summer Sun Safety How Sun Exposure Place Minorities at Risk for Skin Cancer
The month of July calls for summer vacations and holiday cookouts for thousands of families across the country. Outdoor activities enjoying the sun-filled weather becomes the usual choice of fun for adults and children. July is National UV Month, which is an important time of year for everyone, particularly men and women of color, to protect their skin from sun exposure that can in fact lead to the harmful effects of skin cancer.
African Americans may not be as careful with sun safety habits as others, believing that the melanin in their darker skin is protecting them from skin cancer. While skin cancer is less common in people with a darker complexion, people of color are still at some risk for the disease. Unfortunately, African Americans are often diagnosed at an advanced stage, when there is less chance for a cure. If youâ€™ve been under the impression that brown skin is like a shield of armor protecting you against the dangerous UV rays of the sun, youâ€™re not the only one.
The Skin Cancer Foundation reports that skin cancer rates among Hispanics are skyrocketing in the US. New research shows that in the past two decades alone, melanoma incidence among Hispanics has risen almost 20 percent.
Hispanics are the fastest-growing population in the U.S., with a 43 percent increase in their numbers from 2000 to 2010. It is estimated that by 2050, the Hispanic population will exceed 100 million, representing more than 24 percent of the total population. Unfortunately, as the number of Hispanics living in the U.S. has risen, so have their instances of skin cancer: From 1992 to 2008, their annual melanoma incidence increased by 19 percent. Too little use of sun safety techniques (such as seeking shade, wearing protective clothing, and using sunscreen) may have contributed to this rapid rise in melanoma and other skin cancers among Hispanics.
"More awareness about skin cancer is needed for minorities because they believe they are at low risk of developing it," says Henry Ford Hospital dermatologist Diane Jackson-Richards, M.D.
The good news? Skin cancer can be prevented with the proper care and caution against sun exposure. Communities, health professionals, and families can work together to decrease the risk of the development of skin cancer.
The National REACH Coalition wishes you and your family a safe and healthy summer 2015.
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Summer Fitness Do's and Don'ts
Summer is here, which means families will spend more time outdoors. During these months the sunâ€™s rays tend to be extremely strong, making proper sun protection essential. Exposure to the sunâ€™s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays increases the risk of skin cancer, which can be dangerous and even deadly.
Avoid the sun especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when ultraviolet rays are the strongest.
Protect your skin even on cloudy days. Avoid surfaces that reflect light such as water, sand, concrete and snow.
Wear loose-fitting long-sleeved shirts and pants, a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
Use sunscreens that block both UVA and UVB, usually labeled as broad spectrum. Look for a sun protection factor of 30 or higher and are water resistant.
King v Burwell
On June 25th, in a 6-3 ruling, the Supreme Court upheld a key provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that provides health insurance subsidies to low and moderate-income Americans. The ruling ensures that approximately 6.4 million people nationwide will continue to receive subsidies.
The court was tasked with interpreting a provision of the ACA authorizing tax credits for those who purchase health insurance through exchanges â€œestablished by the state.â€ The Obama Administration interpreted the provision to authorize subsidies both in states that operate their own exchanges, and the 34 states that rely on the federal government to run their exchange.
Opponents of the ACA challenged the administrationâ€™s ruling, arguing that a plain text reading does not permit subsidies in states with exchanges operated by the federal government. A legal victory for the plaintiffs would have eliminated current subsidies for 6.4 million people.
Instead, the Supreme Court sided with the administration, preserving existing subsidies nationwide. In an opinion authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, the majority of justices held that the â€œcontext and structure of the actâ€ authorized subsidies in states with federally operated exchanges.
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