Lawmakers postpone vote on indoor-tanning ban

March 14, 2012

The Idaho House of Representatives' decision to postpone a vote on a bill to ban indoor tanning by minors has elicited strong responses from both the Idaho Dermatology Society and the American Academy of Dermatology Association.

Boise, Idaho - The Idaho House of Representatives’ decision to postpone a vote on a bill to ban indoor tanning by minors has elicited strong responses from both the Idaho Dermatology Society and the American Academy of Dermatology Association.

The Idaho Statesman reports that the vote was postponed after the Idaho Freedom Foundation raised concerns that the ban would financially benefit dermatologists who would prescribe tanning for some conditions. Lindsay D. Sewell, M.D., president of the Idaho Dermatology Society, responded by noting that unlike phototherapy devices, indoor tanning beds are not recognized by regulators as medical devices designed to treat skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema and vitiligo.

“We are not competitors with the tanning industry, and we have no conflict of interest with this bill,” Dr. Sewell told the Statesman.

Meanwhile, AADA President Ronald L. Moy, M.D., issued a statement saying, “The issues raised about this legislation are absolutely ridiculous. The purpose of this legislation is to prevent future skin cancers. Scientific evidence demonstrates a 75 percent increase in the risk of melanoma in those who have been exposed to UV radiation from indoor tanning.”

In his statement, Dr. Moy contends that far from benefitting financially from the proposed legislation, dermatologists would lose money because the ban will reduce future incidents of skin cancer.

“This is the type of revenue loss that dermatologists would welcome,” Dr. Moy said.

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