Monday, January 25, 2010

The Tacoma News Tribune – “Tanning bed regulation long overdue”

The News Tribune attempts to bring much needed attention to the dangers of tanning beds, especially to the youth of our country. While the Tribune is supportive of additional regulation of tanning beds through expanded disclosures and standards, it falls well short of the mark in supporting much needed protection for the most vulnerable of our society. Washington State House Bill 2652 goes the extra distance to provide protections for those under 18 years of age by only allowing access to tanning beds through physician referral.

 If this action sounds very familiar, it should. This is the recommendation of the World Health Organization and the same restrictions just passed into law by Howard County, Maryland. See the following link for more information:

The News Tribune should do their homework to learn more about the risks versus benefits of tanning beds. I think they will find it very difficult to manufacture one legitimate reason, grounded in science, to oppose tanning bed restrictions for teenagers.

I received an e-mail today from the mother of a young girl that died at age 29 after being diagnosed with melanoma at 20 years of age and surviving the disease for another 9 years after diagnosis. Melanoma can be a silent killer, showing up after several years of exposure to tanning beds. Jaime Regan’s mother, Donna, refers to her daughter as a tanning bed addict when she was a teenager. Her full story is at: .

To view a very informative video by the Academy of Dermatology about tanning beds usage by teenagers, see the following video:

With additional media attention being focused on the dangers tanning beds, it is my hope that legislators and the public will show the necessary courage to help protect the public, and especially teenagers, from the deadly potential outcomes from tanning bed usage. I invite you to become part of this conversation an advocacy.

Thank you.


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