An evaluation of sun protection policies in Queensland primary schools

Nikles, Jane, Harrison, Simone, Turner, Denise, Cohen, Hilla, and Nowak, Madeleine (2013) An evaluation of sun protection policies in Queensland primary schools. In: Annals of the Australasian College of Tropical Medicine (14), p. 26. From: Townsville Health Research Week, 10-16 October 2013, Townsville, QLD, Australia.

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Abstract

Background/Aims: To conduct a baseline assessment of sun-protection policies in primary schools in seven Queensland regions.

Methods: Sun protection policies were obtained from primary schools in Queenslands 7 largest population centres. They were evaluated according to criteria developed from The Cancer Councils guide to being SunSmart. Points were awarded for each criterion up to a maximum total score of 12.

Results: In 2012/2013, sun protection policies were obtained from 533 primary schools (Brisbane 230, Sunshine Coast 84, Gold Coast 72, Toowoomba 51, Mackay 41, Rockhampton 36, Mt Isa 19). 512 (96.1%) schools were metropolitan/urban; 21 (4.0%) were rural/remote; 528 (99.1%) were coeducational; 485 (91%) were primary only; and 335 (62.9%) were public. Sun protection policy scores ranged from 0-12 (with 12 the highest score); median score was 2.0. 69.8% of policies scored 0, 1 or 2. SunSmart hats and clothing were mentioned in the majority (87.8% and 95.1%) but all 10 other elements suggested by The Cancer Council were mentioned in less than 23%. The worst performing element was the sun protection policy is used when planning all outdoor events at 4.3%. 26 of 35 policies that scored 11 or 12 (74.3%) were from public schools, 31 (88.6%) from primary only, 32 (91.4%) from co-educational, and 33 (94.2%) from urban schools.

Conclusion: Generally, quality of sun protection policies was poor. Further work with Education Queensland and Queensland primary schools is needed to improve the quality of sun protection policies, and better protect school children from risk of skin cancer.

Item ID: 31347
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
Keywords: sun protection policies, Queensland, primary schools, sun expoaure
Additional Information:

Published in the Annals of the ACTM: the Official Journal of The Australasian College of Tropical Medicine. Volume 14, Issue 1, October 2013.

ISSN: 1448-4706
Date Deposited: 16 Apr 2014 01:18
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111716 Preventive Medicine @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920412 Preventive Medicine @ 100%
Downloads: Total: 41
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