Kansas tanning operators and their support for regulating youth access to tanning
Muma, Richard D.
Apollo, Monica L.
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Muma RD, Apollo ML. Kansas tanning operators and their support for regulating youth access to tanning. Proceedings: KPHA 65th Annual Conference. September 2008:27.
It is estimated that 30 million Americans tan in a given year and about two million of them will be teens. Exposure to UV rays seems to be the most important environmental factor in developing skin cancer. Nearly 20 states have passed some type of legislation on youth access to indoor tanning. Kansas has no regulations on youth access to indoor tanning. Few studies have been done regarding whether tanning operators support or oppose youth access restrictions. Methodology: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the basic demographics, attitudes and stated practices regarding youth access to tanning among Kansas tanning operators. A survey was mailed to Kansas tanning facilities regarding these items and results were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results: The survey response rate was 28% (total surveyed=651). The majority of the respondents felt that there was “none to a little risk” with indoor tanning (60%). However, most felt that someone could be too young to tan and 65% had discouraged one from tanning because of their age. 92% supported written youth parental consent, yet were not enforcing parents to accompany youth on their first visit. Conclusion: The majority of operators believed that written parental consent and age regulations for indoor tanning should be required, yet they were not enforcing parents to accompany youth on their first visit. This study documents perceptions of Kansas tanning operators regarding youth access to tanning and may be helpful to those contemplating policy in this regard in the State of Kansas.