School sun-protection policies—does being SunSmart make a difference?

Turner, Denise, Harrison, Simone L., Buettner, Petra, and Nowak, Madeleine (2014) School sun-protection policies—does being SunSmart make a difference? Health Education Research, 29 (3). pp. 367-377.

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Abstract

Evaluate the comprehensiveness of primary school sun-protection policies in tropical North Queensland, Australia. Pre-determined criteria were used to assess publicly available sun-protection policies from primary schools in Townsville (latitude 19.3°S; n = 43), Cairns (16.9°S; n = 46) and the Atherton Tablelands (17.3°S; n = 23) during 2009–2012. Total scores determined policy comprehensiveness. The relationship between policy score, SunSmart status and demographic characteristics was explored. At least 96.6% of primary schools sampled had a sun-protection policy. Although policies of Cancer Council accredited 'SunSmart' schools addressed more environmental, curriculum and review-related criteria than those of 'non-SunSmart' schools, the overall median score for both groups was low at 2 from a possible 12 (48.5% of SunSmart schools [SSSs]: inter-quartile range [IQR = 2.0–9.0] versus 65.9% of non-SSSs: [IQR = 2.0–3.0], P = 0.008). Most policies addressed hat wearing, while criteria related to shade provision at outdoor events, regular policy review and using the policy to plan outdoor events were poorly addressed. Although most primary schools in skin cancer-prone North Queensland have written sun-protection policies, the comprehensiveness of these policies could be vastly improved. These schools may require further support and advice to improve the comprehensive of their policies and incentives to continually implement them to achieve and maintain exemplary sun-protection compliance.

Item ID: 37718
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: sun protection behaviours, policy, primary schools, tropical Australia, evaluation
Additional Information:

This publication was included as Chapter 3 of the following PhD thesis: Turner, Denise (2017) A cross-sectional analysis of the sun-protective behaviours and policies at primary schools in north and far north Queensland. PhD thesis, James Cook University, which is available Open Access in ResearchOnline@JCU. Please see the Related URLs for access.

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ISSN: 1465-3648
Funders: Queensland Health (QH)
Projects and Grants: QH Project ID 57543
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2015 03:29
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified @ 50%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111716 Preventive Medicine @ 50%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920412 Preventive Medicine @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9204 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) > 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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