TAL launches sun safety initiative at Bondi

Richard Laycock 2 December 2017

Spotchecker at Bondi Beach

Skin cancer screenings are coming to a beach near you.

One of Australia's largest life insurers, TAL, is taking to beaches and other locations around Australia with its SpotChecker to raise awareness about the dangers of skin cancer.

TAL's SpotChecker initiative allows the general public to gain access to free skin checks by skin cancer doctors, with pop-up clinics at some of Australia's most iconic sites.

Roughly 14,000 people in Australia are affected by skin cancer every year, which is 10.5% of all cancers. And with it not being mandatory to report non-melanoma skin cancers, that number could be much higher.

TAL paid out over $20 million for skin cancer cases in the 2016 financial year (April 2016-March 2017), with those claims making up 4% of all TAL income protection and critical illness claims in that period.

“Skin cancer is one of Australia’s most common cancers but it is also one of the most easily detectable and preventable. Through TAL SpotChecker, we’re aiming to reduce the impact of skin cancer through increased awareness and action around skin checks,” TAL general manager for health services Dr Sally Phillips said.

While we're aware of the dangers posed by the sun, a large proportion of us aren't taking any action. Research conducted by TAL found that 95% of Australians see the importance of sun safety. However, 39% of us have never had a skin check.

Worryingly, that figure is even higher with young Australian.

"50% of 18 to 25 year olds have never had a skin check," Dr Phillips said.

Dr Phillips also said that according to the Cancer Council, one in eight adults and one in five teenagers get sunburnt each weekend.

This is the second year that TAL is running its SpotChecker after a successful campaign in 2016.

"Over two weekends, we provided free professional skin checks to 681 Australians and we referred 14% of participants for further skin checks," said Dr Phillips.

The 2017 tour starts at Bondi and makes its way all around the country, ending in Perth in late February 2018. Find out when SpotChecker will be at a beach near you:

  • Bondi Beach in Sydney: 2-3 December 2017
  • Surfer’s Paradise on the Gold Coast: 16-17 December 2017
  • Federation Square in Melbourne: 27-28 January 2018
  • Henley Beach in Adelaide: 10-11 February 2018
  • City Beach in Perth: 24-25 February 2018

The SpotChecker is just one of the ways that TAL is trying to help its customers, and Australians at large, live a healthy life. What's more, they're even rewarding some people for doing so.

TAL is now offering a Health Sense discount, which provides those with a BMI of 19-28 with a 15% discount on life or total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance policies.

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