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Petition to ban sunbeds

A petition has been launched in the hope of persuading the government to ban commercial sunbeds in the UK.

If the petition reaches 100,000 signatures then it will be considered for debate in Parliament. At the time of going to press, it had less than 20,000 signatures and the petition is due to close on 12 January.

The petition says that melanoma kills six people every day and sunbed users have an increased risk of developing skin cancer.

It states: “The NHS is already overstretched. If melanoma spreads through the body, it is notoriously difficult to treat. The treatments that are used are enormously expensive. A sunbed ban would indirectly support the NHS.”

Among those behind the call to ban sunbeds is Sandra Phinbow, who is Scientific Advisor to Melanoma UK and is also National Council Member for the IBMS.

She said: “As a biomedical scientist, I am reaching out to each and every one of you to help to bring an end to these avoidable deaths.”

The government responded to the petition on 13 November. It said: “The Department of Health and Social Care takes the risks to health of ultraviolet radiation seriously, including exposure through use of sunbeds.”

The statement concluded that it has “no current plans to review policy on sunbeds but will keep the evidence under review”.

To view the petition, visit

Picture credit | iStock

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