Local sunburn cases highest in the state.

Newcastle Herald 1 December 2023. The Newcastle Herald published an article in early December 2023 informing its readers of the latest data in relation to people presenting to emergency departments for sunburn in 2022/2023.

With 184 cases reported in the Hunter New England Health District, unfortunately we were the highest area in the state. These figures indicated a 28% increase from the previous financial year.

The highest rates across the state were seen in the age group 5-24 which at HMF, we find alarming given that the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the age group 20-39 is melanoma. In 2022 the Cancer Institute of NSW listed the top 25 melanoma hotspots in the state by Local Government Area with Port Stephens ranked 12th, Lake Macquarie 15th, Maitland 20th and Newcastle 24th. We’ve come a long way as Newcastle was ranked at number 1 in the late 1980’s, but we have a lot more work to do to get the message across about sun safety and protecting our skin.

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