Protect People with Albinism from Skin Cancer: Call on the WHO to re-add Sunscreen to the List of Essential Medicines

Member States of the World Health Organization (WHO)

Including sunscreen (sunblockers that meet a particular technical criterion for sun protection) on the World Health Organization’s list of essential medicines will ensure that it becomes more widely available and affordable.

Petition by
Africa Albinism Network
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, United Republic of

To: Member States of the World Health Organization (WHO)
From: [Your Name]

We, persons with albinism who are a constituent of persons with disabilities and our allies;

Urge you to re-add sunblockers (or sunscreen) to the official WHO's Essential Medicines List and contribute to long-lasting change for the Albinism community worldwide.

Why? Because skin cancer is the number one killer of people with albinism in many parts of the world, particularly in Africa.

According to one estimate, close to 90 percent of people with albinism contract or die from skin cancer by their 40th birthday.

The situation is more dire with climate change. Rising ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun is increasing the rates of skin cancer globally, and people with albinism are especially vulnerable. People with albinism in many parts of Africa do not have adequate access to sunscreen because sunscreens are unavailable and/or unaffordable. For people with albinism, sunscreen is not a cosmetic but an essential, life-saving drug.

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