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Consequences of banning commercial solaria in 2016 in Australia

Gordon, LG, Sinclair, C, Cleaves, N, Makin, JK ORCID: 0000-0001-7556-196X, Rodriguez-Acevedo, AJ and Green, AC 2020 , 'Consequences of banning commercial solaria in 2016 in Australia' , Health Policy, vol. 124 , pp. 665-670 , doi: 10.1016/j.healthpol.2020.04.010.

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Objective: To quantify the consequences of a total ban on indoor tanning for short-term regulatory enforcement, for consumers, and the longer-term health economic effects. Methods: Instances of illegal solarium prosecutions and tanning bed confiscations in the state of Victoria (population 7 million) were obtained from government surveillance records. Consumer interest for indoor tanning and spray/fake tanning were assessed using Google Trends' Search Volume Index (range 0 to maximum 100). Long-term health economic effects were estimated using a Markov cohort model. Results: The Victorian Government completed 13 prosecutions and confiscated 39 illegal tanning units. Consumer interest for indoor tanning reduced to less than one quarter of pre-regulation seasonal peaks (Search Volume Index 12/48) while spray tanning interest remained high (70-88). For young Australians over their remaining lives, banning commercial indoor tanning is expected to avert 31,009 melanomas (-3.7%), avert 468,249 keratinocyte cancers (-3.6%) and save over AU$64 (US$47) million in healthcare costs and produce over AU$516 (US$375) million in productivity gains. Conclusions: Three years after the nationwide ban, regulation enforcement activities have decreased, and consumers have adopted substitute tanning methods.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Gordon, LG and Sinclair, C and Cleaves, N and Makin, JK and Rodriguez-Acevedo, AJ and Green, AC
Keywords: ultraviolet radiation, indoor tanning, sunbeds, government regulation, healthcare costs, melanoma
Journal or Publication Title: Health Policy
Publisher: Elsevier Sci Ireland Ltd
ISSN: 0168-8510
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.healthpol.2020.04.010
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© 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved

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