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Health Indicator Report of Sun Safety Measures

Sun safety is defined as doing at least one thing to protect yourself from the sun: wearing sunblock, wearing a hat, avoiding the sun, or wearing a long-sleeve shirt. Melanoma is the most serious of three types of skin cancer (basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma). It is estimated that 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers and 65 percent of melanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.

Proportion of Adults Aged 18+ Who Reported Practicing Sun Safety by Year, Utah, 2000-2012


Age-adjusted to the U.S. 2000 standard population. Old Methodology: Previous BRFSS methodology used "post-stratification" which was used to weight data by age, gender, and local health district (LHD). New Methodology: To reduce bias and more accurately represent population data, the BRFSS has changed survey methodology. It began conducting surveys by cellular phone in addition to landline phones. It also adopted "iterative proportional fitting" (raking) as its weighting method. With raking, education, race/ethnicity, marital status, home ownership/renter, and telephone source are included in the weighting procedure.

Data Source

Utah Data: Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, Office of Public Health Assessment, Utah Department of Health


Percentage of adults 18+ reporting doing at least one thing to protect themselves from the sun: wearing sunblock, wearing a hat, avoiding the sun, or wearing a long-sleeve shirt.


Percentage of Utah adults aged 18+ who practiced sun safety (at least one thing).


The total number of survey respondents aged 18 or older excluding those who answered "don't know" or "refused" to the numerator question.

Healthy People Objective C-20.6:

Increase the proportion of adults aged 18 years and older who follow protective measures that may reduce the risk of skin cancer
U.S. Target: 73.7 percent
State Target: currently being revised

How Are We Doing?

In 2012, Utah's age-adjusted percentage of sun safety among Utah adults was 65.8%. Sun safety increases with age. Approximately 56 percent of Utahns between 18 and 34 years of age practice one or more sun safety measure, compared to more than 78 percent of Utahns 65 years of age or older. Utah females 18 to 34 years of age are significantly more likely to practice one or more sun safety measures compared to males of a similar age (63.2 percent compared with 48.9 percent).

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

Due to differences in reporting, U.S. data is not included.

What Is Being Done?

The Utah Cancer Control Program partners with the Utah Cancer Action Network to increase awareness of sun safety and melanoma. Projects include monitoring current levels of sun safety behaviors, melanoma incidence and mortality, media campaigns, and outreach presentations. The mission of the UCAN is to lower cancer incidence and mortality in Utah through collaborative efforts directed toward cancer prevention and control. As a result of this planning process, objectives and strategies have been developed by community partners regarding the early detection of cervical, testicular, prostate, skin, breast, and colorectal cancers as well as the promotion of physical activity, healthy eating habits, and smoking cessation.
Page Content Updated On 07/09/2014, Published on 07/14/2014
The information provided above is from the Department of Health's Center for Health Data IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Fri, 03 December 2021 10:02:07 from Department of Health, Center for Health Data, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Thu, 20 Jun 2019 13:03:27 MDT