Skin Cancer Foundation

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The Skin Cancer Foundation (SCF), founded in 1979 by dermatologist and Mohs surgeon Perry Robins, MD,[1] is an international organization devoted to the prevention, detection, and treatment of skin cancer.[2] The Foundation is headquartered in New York City and is a 501(c)(3) public charity.[3][4]

The world’s most common cancer,[5] skin cancer affects two million people[6] and kills over 10,000 people in the US annually.[7][8] The vast majority of skin cancers are associated with ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.[9] The incidence and impact of skin cancer can be dramatically reduced through education, behavior modification, and early detection.[10][11]

Public Information[edit]

Annually, the Foundation distributes over two million[12] pieces of medically reviewed[13] educational information[14] on sun protection and skin cancer, including brochures; posters; The Skin Cancer Foundation Journal; the quarterlies The Melanoma Letter for physicians and Sun & Skin News for consumers. The public can obtain information by writing to the organization, and patients seeking referrals may consult the Physician Finder at[15]

The Seal of Recommendation[edit]

Sun protection products with an SPF (sun protection factor) of 15+ or a UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) of 30+ may be eligible to apply for the Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation.[16] The Seal is granted to sunscreens, sunglasses, UV-protective auto and residential window film, umbrellas, sun protective clothing, and laundry additives[17] that meet the criteria[18] of an independent Photobiology Committee.[19]


Funding is provided annually for research and clinical studies.[20][21] Ninety research grants have been awarded since 1981, totaling almost $1 million.[22] Proposals are evaluated by the Foundation’s Grants Review Committee.[23]

Programs, Advocacy, and International Outreach[edit]

Current Skin Cancer Foundation programs include:

The Road to Healthy Skin Tour presented by Aveeno and Rite Aid, a traveling skin cancer screening and resource center that visits nearly 80 cities each year.[24]

Go With Your Own Glow, a print ad campaign to encourage people not to tan.[25]

The Sunsational Guide to Smart Sun Safety: Fun in the Sun 101 (, a program for middle school children.[26]


The Foundation is a core member of The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention, a coordinating body that seeks to establish a national action agenda on skin cancer.[27] The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention secured $4 million for melanoma research from the United States Department of Defense in 2009.[28] Since indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanning is associated with an increased risk of all forms of skin cancer,[29][30] the Foundation also campaigns for the stricter regulation of UV tanning beds and lamps.[31][32]

International Outreach[edit]

Public education abroad is sponsored by the Foundation’s International Advisory Council, representing 23 countries.[33] The Foundation sponsors the annual International Dermatology Exchange Program[6] and the biennial World Congress on Cancers of the Skin.[34][35]

The Skin Cancer Foundation has received the American Academy of Dermatology’s Excellence in Education Award and 14 Gold Triangle Awards for Community Service.[36]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ NY Medical Skin Solutions. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  2. ^ Charity Navigator. The Skin Cancer Foundation. Accessed July 23, 2010.
  3. ^ GuideStar. Skin Cancer Foundation Inc. Accessed July 23, 2010.
  4. ^ Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. July 23, 2010.
  5. ^ Rockoff, Alan, MD. Skin Cancer (Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer). Accessed July 26, 2010.
  6. ^ a b Rogers, H. W.; Weinstock, M. A.; Harris, A. R.; Hinckley, M. R.; Feldman, S. R.; Fleischer, A. B.; Coldiron, B. M. (2010). "Incidence Estimate of Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer in the United States, 2006". Archives of Dermatology 146 (3): 283–7. doi:10.1001/archdermatol.2010.19. PMID 20231499. 
  7. ^ Kane, C; Keehn, C; Smithberger, E; Glass, L (2003). "Histopathology of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma and its variants". Seminars in Cutaneous Medicine and Surgery 23 (1): 54–61. doi:10.1016/S1085-5629(03)00088-9. PMID 15095916. 
  8. ^ National Cancer Institute. Melanoma. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  9. ^ Armstrong, B.K., and A. Kricker, How Much Melanoma Is Caused by Sun Exposure?, Melanoma Research, 1993: 3:395-401.
  10. ^ National Cancer Institute. What You Need to Know About Skin Cancer Prevention. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  11. ^ American Cancer Society. Skin Cancer Prevention and Early Detection. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  12. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation: Leader in the Fight Against Skin Cancer, 2010 Update. Presentation, The Skin Cancer Foundation, May 24, 2010.
  13. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Medical Editors. Accessed July 23, 2010.
  14. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Education. Accessed July 23, 2010.
  15. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Physician Finder. Accessed July 23, 2010.
  16. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Seal of Recommendation. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  17. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Brands Currently in the Seal of Recommendation Program. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  18. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. How a Product Earns Our Seal. Accessed july 26, 2010.
  19. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Our Photobiology Committee. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  20. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Research Grants 2011. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  21. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Research Grants. The Skin Cancer Accessed July 26, 2010.
  22. ^ Research Grants 1981–2008. The Skin Cancer Foundation Journal 2009, p.87-91.
  23. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. 30th Anniversary Dinner Highlights. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  24. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. The Road to Healthy Skin Tour, Tour 2010. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  25. ^ Don't Glow like Coco, says Skin-Cancer Ad. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  26. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. The Sunsational Guide to Smart Sun Safety: Fun in the Sun 101. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  27. ^ The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention. History & Goals. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  28. ^ Rosenthal, Eric T. (October 2008). "Melanoma Added to Cancers Funded by Department of Defense Research Dollars". Oncology Times 30 (20): 28, 31. doi:10.1097/01.COT.0000340695.46201.2e. 
  29. ^ Karagas, M. R. (2002). "Use of Tanning Devices and Risk of Basal Cell and Squamous Cell Skin Cancers". CancerSpectrum Knowledge Environment 94: 224–226. doi:10.1093/jnci/94.3.224. 
  30. ^ "The association of use of sunbeds with cutaneous malignant melanoma and other skin cancers: A systematic review". International Journal of Cancer 120: 1116–22. 2006. doi:10.1002/ijc.22453. PMID 17131335. 
  31. ^ Reinberg, Steven. FDA Panel Weighs New Restrictions on Tanning Beds. Bloomberg Businessweek. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  32. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. Advocacy. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  33. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. International Advisory Council. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  34. ^ The Skin Cancer Foundation. International. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  35. ^ The 13th World Congress on Cancers of the Skin. Accessed July 26, 2010.
  36. ^ American Academy of Dermatology. Gold Triangle Awards. Accessed July 26, 2010.

External links[edit]