FARMINGTON – The Maine Comprehensive Cancer Consortium’s Skin Cancer Task Force, the American Cancer Society and the Maine Comprehensive Cancer Control Program has awarded funding to Franklin Memorial Hospital to support the implementation of the No Sun for Baby Program.

In 2001, the statewide Skin Cancer Task Force, a subcommittee of the Maine Cancer Consortium, developed a newborn sun protection program, the No Sun For Baby Program. The hospital-based program targets new or expecting parents and provides Baby Sun Safety Kits to parents on proper sun safety for newborns, a baby sun hat, beach pail and shovel; inclusion of sun safety information in childbirth education classes; and an evaluation postcard to be returned by parents.

Sun protection for newborns is particularly important. Data indicates a link between sunburns in childhood and increased risk of skin cancer. However, many parents are unaware of the ways to protect their baby from harmful sun exposure.

“Maine’s beaches and parks can be a wonderful place to take your child, but parents need to be educated about how sensitive a baby’s skin is,” said Netta Apedoe of the Maine Comprehensive Cancer Control Program. “Over 80 percent of a person’s sun exposure happens before their 18th birthday, so starting good sun protection habits early is extremely important.”

For more information about the No Sun For Baby Program, contact the Maine Comprehensive Cancer Control Program at 287-4321.

For more information about skin cancer, contact the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit www.cancer.org.


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