Health professionals

GP examining a patient's arm using a dermatoscope

Health professionals play an important role in the prevention, detection and management of skin cancer.

SunSmart provides education, resources and support for health professionals based on the latest evidence-based cancer information.

Health professional training

NEW ONLINE LEARNING: The Prevention and Early Detection of Skin Cancer in General Practice

Updated six-hour RACGP-accredited online active learning guides GPs and health professionals through the epidemiology of skin cancers in Australia, skin cancer prevention and UV, along with the diagnosis and management of skin cancers.

Hear a GP's experience of the online learning

Access the training

Dermoscopy for Victorian General Practice Program

Since 2018, SunSmart has trained and equipped more than 400 GPs through its Dermoscopy for Victorian General Practice Program, funded by the Victorian Department of Health.

Locate a GP practice that has benefitted from the program.

Find a GP

ThinkGP online education

ThinkGP RACGP and ACRRM accredited six-hour advanced course guides GPs through the epidemiology of skin cancers in Australia, skin cancer prevention, UV, vitamin D awareness, and the diagnosis and management of skin cancers.

Access ThinkGP

Resources for your practice

SunSmart has a range of skin cancer prevention and early detection resources, including:

Are you looking for hard copy resources for your practice? We have a large range of skin cancer prevention and early detection resources including posters, flyers, brochures and booklets tailored to different audiences.

Download or order resources

Tools to help your patients be SunSmart

UV radiation can’t be seen or felt. Encourage your patients to monitor the times of day when UV levels can damage skin leading to skin cancer.

SunSmart Global UV app

Provides reliable real-time and forecast UV levels for location.

Download the app

UV widget

Add the UV widget to your practice website to show live and predicted UV levels.

Add the UV widget

FAQs about sunscreen

Are sunscreens safe?

In Australia we have some of the toughest regulations when it comes to assessment of medicines and sunscreen is no exception.

Each ingredient in sunscreen is assessed by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) for safety before it is released onto the market for Australians to use.

How do you choose a sunscreen?

The best sunscreen is the one that you find easy to use and reapply every two hours.

When choosing a sunscreen pick one that is:

  • SPF50 or 50+
  • water resistant
  • broad-spectrum so it blocks both UVA and UVB.

What does SPF mean?

The SPF rating indicates the amount of UVB radiation that potentially reaches the skin if the sunscreen is applied according to the directions. Cancer Council recommends SPF 50 or SPF50+ sunscreen.

All sunscreens in Australia are regulated by the TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration). SPF50 sunscreens provide a ‘high’ level of protection, while SPF50+ sunscreens provide a ‘very high’ level of protection. SPF50 is estimated to filter 98% of UVB radiation and SPF50+ is estimated to filter 98.3% of UVB radiation.

No sunscreen will block all UV radiation so it is important to remember that sunscreen should always be used in combination with other sun protection measures, including wearing sun protective hats, protective clothing, sunglasses and seeking shade.

How do you apply sunscreen correctly?

The average-sized adult needs a teaspoon of sunscreen for their head and neck, each limb and for the front and the back of the body. Or 7 teaspoons for one full body application.

Sunscreen should be applied 20 minutes before going outside and reapplied at least every two hours.

What about sunscreen reactions and allergies?

The risk of allergies from sunscreen use is very small. All sunscreens in Australia are tightly regulated through the  Therapeutic Goods Administration.

Some people may experience reactions to different ingredients in sunscreens. If a reaction occurs, it is usually caused by perfumes and/or preservatives in the product, not the ingredients that filter or block UV.

For people who experience a reaction to a sunscreen, try a fragrance-free product such as a toddler or sensitive sunscreen.

Does sunscreen impact vitamin D production?

For most people, only a few minutes of daily sun exposure is required to maintain healthy levels of vitamin D throughout the year. 

Population studies have shown that regular sunscreen use has little effect on vitamin D levels. If someone is concerned about a vitamin D deficiency, supplementation may be suitable.

Given the harmful effects of UV radiation, sun exposure without any form of sun protection when the UV Index is 3 or above is not recommended, even for those diagnosed with vitamin D deficiency.

How do I know when sun protection is required?

Sun protection is recommended whenever UV levels are 3 and above. In Victoria, average UV levels are 3 and above from mid-August to the end of April.

Monitor the UV levels with the free SunSmart Global UV app to know when the UV is 3 or above and sun protection is required.

If working outdoors or spending a lot of time outside, using all five forms of sun protection is recommended all year round.


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