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Hundreds receive free skin check

Hunter Melanoma Foundation (HMF) launched its Spot Check campaign last weekend providing more than 200 beach goers and local Surf Life Saving club members with free skin checks.


Out of the 200 patients, 88 skin cancers were discovered of which 11 were possible melanomas.

Hunter Melanoma Foundation Executive Officer, Claudia Tolhurst said the foundation was amazed to see how many people came down to the Cooks Hill Surf Club over the weekend to receive a free skin check.

“We had people from all different age groups and skin types popping into our Spot Check clinic over the weekend. It was wonderful to see so many people taking time out of their day to look after their skin,” Claudia said.

As part of HMF’s commitment to defeating melanoma, the foundation partnered with Jimmy Niggles, founder of Beard Season and local skin doctors from Newcastle Skin Check to bring pop up skin checks to one of Newcastle’s most popular beaches.

The pop-up skin check stations ran over two days, with the general public receiving free checks on Saturday and the Hunter Surf Life Saving community receiving free skin checks on Sunday.

Doctors from Newcastle Skin Check conducted full skin check examinations using unique and specialised skin check software free of charge.

People who presented with suspected spots were referred by the medical team for further inspection with a support system for the individual put in place.

Claudia Tolhurst said the foundation was grateful for the opportunity to provide both the local community and Hunter Surf Life Saving community with potentially life saving skin checks.

“When you look at the results from the weekend, 88 skin cancers were found to which 11 were possible melanomas, it really puts in perspective the importance of protecting your skin from the sun and getting regular skin checks,” Claudia said.

Hunter Surf Life Saving President, Henry Scruton said that the Spot Check campaign will hopefully increase the public’s awareness of not only how important it is to protect your skin from the sun but how easy it is to get a skin check.

“People weren’t aware of the devasting affects melanoma had back in the day, now sun safety it is a crucial part of our Surf Life Saving training. The Spot Check campaign will hopefully increase education within our region of the prevention methods of melanoma and the importance of getting your skin checked,” said Henry.

This is the first of many Spot Check stations the foundation will be delivering to Newcastle’s popular beaches over the summer.

“HMF is very excited to be providing free pop up skin checks to our local community and Surf Life Saving community over the summer. Our next pop up skin clinics will be on the 5th and 6th of December so keep an eye out on our social media and website for more information,” Claudia said.

The ‘Spot Check’ campaign was made possible through the support of Jimmy Niggles- Founder of Beard Season, Newcastle Skin Check, and grants from Novartis, Club Grants and Nova Alliance Bank.

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