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Skin cancer cases rise 41% in five years

04 September 2014 09:00

The number of people admitted to hospital for skin cancer has increased by 41% in just five years

The number of people admitted to hospital for skin cancer has increased by 41% in just five years

A dramatic rise in the number of skin cancer patients has seen experts call for more efforts to raise people's awareness about the dangers of sun exposure.

New figures released by Public Health England (PHE) show the number of people admitted to hospitals nationwide with the condition has increased by as much as 41% in the space of just five years.

Admissions for both non-melanoma skin cancer and malignant melanoma jumped from 87,685 in 2007 to 123,808 in 2011.

The British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) claims the vast majority of cases are largely preventable.

It blames the rise on the growing availability of cheap holidays and the apparent need for people to have a tan all year round.

Cancer travel insurance gives people with skin cancer the peace of mind they need to enjoy trips abroad, covering medical expenses including replacing lost medication and access to 24/7 emergency assistance.

Skin cancers are the most common form of cancer in England, with the total the same as all other types of cancers combined.

The overall cost of inpatient treatment for skin cancers in 2011 was more than £95 million. Surgery was required for 78% of non-melanoma skin cancers and 71.5% of melanomas, while more than 16,000 skin grafts and flaps were required for treatment during the year.

In light of the findings, BAD is calling for more to be done to inform the public about the serious health risks associated with unmediated sun exposure.

It wants to see holidaymakers take greater responsibility for the health of their skin, especially those heading to sunnier climes in search of a tan.