Dermatologists attending the annual meeting for the Florida Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, in Naples, took a break from meeting sessions and presentations Saturday, April 16, to take a hike. That’s right. They hiked along a three-mile stretch of the beach to spread the word about skin cancer awareness and prevention.
Terry Cronin, M.D., and Brett Coldiron, M.D., pose during the Florida Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery's fundraiser, Skin Cancer, Take a Hike!Last year, 225 hikers (many dermatologists) raised more than $111,000 through donations and sponsorships while hiking around the United States for the American Academy of Dermatology’s (AAD’s) skin cancer awareness program Skin Cancer, Take a Hike!
The hiking theme caught on after dermatologist Ellen Marmur, M.D. promoted skin cancer awareness with a hike (or climb) to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro in 2014.
“We get together every year and thought it would be a nice time to do something to raise awareness about the skin cancer epidemic that we’re fighting every day,” says Melbourne, Fla., dermatologist Terrence A Cronin, Jr., M.D. Dr. Cronin, who coordinated the hike, is vice-president, Florida Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery and the advisory board chair for the AAD.
“A big part of our practice, obviously, is skin cancer screening, treatment of skin cancer, removal of skin cancer, prevention of skin cancer,” Dr. Cronin says. “I live in a beach community. Anyone can go to a pool or beach here and see people still baking in the sun. So, any way that we can raise awareness about this epidemic is important.”
Dr. Cronin says people might not think of a walk on the beach as a hike, but the dermatologists participating last weekend made it one. Dermatologists, patients and anyone who wanted to join the cause hiked the stretch of beach wearing sun protective clothes and sunscreen, and talking with beachgoers about skin cancer recognition and prevention.
Money raised at the Skin Cancer, Take a Hike!
Event goes to the AAD’s SPOT Skin Cancer program.
To form a team or join a hike and team, dermatologists and others can visit aad.org/SCTAH
or email [email protected]