The beautifully, sunny, warm climate of our region brings with it a matter of concern- the harmful effects of sun exposure, "the dark side of the sun", which when addressed appropriately, can be prevented. Here too, the Israel Cancer Association (ICA) invests many resources to focus on this area of prevention:
One of our major campaigns is the implementation of Skin Cancer Awareness Week, which we first initiated by us in 1991 and is held annually in collaboration with all the Health Funds and the Association of Dermatologists and Plastic Surgeons.
Now in its 20th year, the Skin Cancer Awareness Campaign aims to increase awareness as to the importance of preventing the harmful effects of the sun and the significance of early detection of melanoma.
The campaign emphasizes public education in all that concerns avoiding exposure to the sun at dangerous hours and taking safety precautions for 'sun smart' exposure, and additionally raises awareness of the importance of early detection.
Throughout this special week, held in the beginning of the summer, hundreds of free cancer examination booths operate in public places throughout the country, providing examinations free of charge to all citizens.
Since the Skin Cancer Awareness week was initiated, there has been a fivefold increase in the early diagnosis of melanoma, the deadly skin cancer.
Thanks to this campaign, the early detection rate of melanoma has increased both among women and men.
Miri Ziv, ICA Director General: " This is the largest campaign that has been conducted in the health system, which combines forces in a unique way for the benefit of public health in Israel. This is a longtime tradition which significantly contributes to heighten awareness of the importance of potentially life-saving early detection."