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AAD Offers Shade Structure Grants to Chicago Parks

Posted: August 9, 2010

In an effort to encourage communities across the country to Be Sun Smart and prevent skin cancer, the American Academy of Dermatology announced that it has awarded grants for the purchase of shade structures to the Chicago Park District and 37 other organizations. In addition to the shade structures, each location will receive a public education sign that lists the Academy’s Be Sun Smart messages, such as seeking shade, applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher, and wearing protective clothing. Since 2000, the Academy has awarded 211 shade structure grants to organizations across the country. These shade structures provide shade for more than 157,799 individuals each day.

“As a type of cancer that has a known cause—overexposure to ultraviolet radiation—skin cancer is a highly preventable disease,” said dermatologist William D. James, MD, FAAD, president of the Academy. “Protecting yourself by seeking shade, using sunscreens, wearing sun-protective clothing and avoiding intentional exposure to tanning devices or midday sun are simple ways to reduce your risk of skin cancer.”

This year, more than two million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed in the United States. It is estimated that in 2010 there will be about 114,900 new cases of melanoma (one of the deadliest forms of skin cancer).

Chicago Park District benefits from “Dermatology in Action” service initiative

With its grant, the Chicago Park District installed shade structures in two parks: Lucy Parson’s Park at 4712 W. Belmont, and Park 544 (also known as Sheil Park), located at the corner of Lincoln and Addison. The grant is part of the Academy’s “Dermatology in Action” service initiative that gives back to the cities in which the Academy hosts its scientific meetings. The Summer Academy Meeting 2010 is being held in Chicago, August 4–8.