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Dermatology Nurses Join Groups in Opposing Tanning Tax Repeal

The Dermatology Nurses Association (DNA), joins nearly 100 state and national medical associations including the AmericanAcademy of Dermatology Association and the American Medical Association in signing a letter of opposition to Rep. Michael Grimm (R-C, NY), who co-sponsored legislation to repeal the 10 percent tax on indoor tanning services.
According to the AmericanAcademy of Dermatology Association, nearly 70 percent of tanning salon patrons are girls and women aged 16 – 29 years. However, skin cancer diagnoses have been steadily increasing among both men and women. American Cancer Society statistics show one in five Americans will develop the disease in his or her lifetime.

“Studies show clear evidence that tanning bed use increases the risk of developing all forms of skin cancer, including melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer,” said DNA President-Elect, Trudy Adamson, MSN, RN, DNC. “Repealing this tax would be a real disservice to young women – some of whom are literally dying to be tan.”
Like the tobacco tax, the tanning tax appropriately reflects the carcinogenic effects of indoor tanning. As it currently stands, the indoor tanning tax serves as the only policy at the federal level that acts as a deterrent to the harmful behavior and significant health risks of indoor tanning.
The DNA has been actively involved in skin cancer prevention education and health policy reform for over five years. To this end, DNA’s position on the hazards of indoor tanning was drafted and approved by the Board of Directors. DNA also endorsed  SunAWARE, an acronym designed to teach primary and secondary skin cancer prevention.  SunAWARE education has been delivered throughout the United States by DNA members for several years through the Don’t Fry Day campaign. DNA members have also lobbied state legislatures for tougher tanning laws for minors in Montana, Massachusetts and Maryland. Additionally, The DNA’s recently updated website, dnanurse.org, contains information on skin cancer including support group information and how-to videos on correctly applying sunscreen and giving a self-skin exam.
“The DNA stands with its partner organizations in the effort to stop the repeal of this tax,” said Adamson.

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