The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) along with Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC), Qatar Cancer Society (QCS), and Sidra Medicine are partnering to strengthen their existing efforts to raise awareness of skin cancer throughout June.
Skin cancer is an abnormal growth of skin cells, most often develops on skin exposed to sun, but it can also occur on an area that is not normally exposed to sun. Skin cancer develops when errors (mutations) occur in the DNA of skin cells. The mutations cause the cell to grow out of control and form a mass of cancer cells.
There are two main types of skin cancer: melanoma and non-melanoma. In Qatar, non-melanoma skin cancer is ranked 6th amongst the most common cancers in both genders according to 2019 Annual Report of the Qatar National Cancer Registry at MoPH.
The risk factors include excessive sun and ultraviolet exposure which is harmful to the skin, having a fair skin, history of sun burn, family history of skin cancer, sunburns during childhood, exposure to radiations and others. The best way to protect against skin cancer is to avoid extensive exposure to sun during mid-day, between 10am and 4pm, avoid using tanning lamps and beds, and use sun protection products.
Awareness posts will be published on social media platforms to raise awareness about skin cancer and the main symptoms and possible changes that can be observed at the beginning of the disease. Those noticing any changes to their skin should consult the primary care physician by calling 107 for treatment or for referral to a specialised dermatologist, a statement added.
June is skin cancer awareness month.