The Netherlands is taking measures to address the high levels of skin cancer in the country by offering free sun protection to its citizens. The government has announced that sun cream dispensers will be made available at various locations including schools, universities, festivals, parks, sports venues, and public spaces.
The aim of this initiative is to ensure that everyone has access to sun protection without being burdened by cost or inconvenience. The government hopes that by making sun cream readily available, applying it will become a habitual practice, similar to Australia's successful "slip, slop, slap" campaign.
The campaign was launched at a festival in Breda, and Venlo-Venray hospital, in collaboration with state health insurers, is reportedly funding sun cream provision in 120 primary schools across multiple municipalities. The idea to repurpose hand disinfectant dispensers from the pandemic for sun cream distribution was suggested by a skin doctor at the hospital.
Skin cancer cases have been increasing in the Netherlands, prompting the need for preventive measures. Sun cream is proven to be the most effective protection against the disease, and it is crucial for children to develop the habit of applying it from a young age, similar to brushing their teeth regularly.
The efforts being undertaken demonstrate the importance placed on the health and well-being of the population, even if it comes with some financial costs. By encouraging people to protect themselves from the sun, especially in regions like Katwijk with above-average sun exposure, the aim is to reduce the incidence of skin cancer in the country.