More than half the nation is now “SUNucated”


sunucate logoROLLING MEADOWS, Ill., JULY 16, 2021 — Rhode Island students will now be able to possess and utilize sunscreen at school and school-related activities, thanks to advocacy from the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association (ASDSA) and the Rhode Island Dermatology Society. Governor Daniel McKee signed into law SUNcucate model legislation, making Rhode Island the 26th “SUNucated” state.

The SUNucate law in Rhode Island allows students, parents and school personnel to use an FDA-approved sunscreen without a physician’s note or prescription. The law also includes a provision for school districts to incorporate teaching sun-safe behaviors in schools. Since the legislation goes into effect immediately, students in Rhode Island will be able to protect themselves during summer and fall activities at school.

“I’m pleased that Rhode Island has passed this important public health legislation and students can now start practicing and learning about sun-safe behaviors at school,” said ASDSA President Mathew M. Avram, MD, JD. “Sunscreen is one of the most effective and easiest ways to prevent damaging UV rays that can cause skin cancer.”

The need for SUNucate arose after concerns from dermatologic surgeons that students were required to bring a note or a prescription from a physician to use sunscreen at school due to its classification as an over-the-counter drug by the FDA. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the United States Preventive Services Task Force both show that children should have access to sunscreen and other sun-protective measures in order to reduce the risk of skin cancer.

ASDSA worked with its coalition partners to pass this legislation, which includes both the Rhode Island Dermatology Society and the Rhode Island Medical Society. To learn more about SUNucate, visit

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With a membership of 6,400+ physicians, ASDSA is a 501(c)(6) association, dedicated to education and advocacy on behalf of dermatologic surgeons and their patients. For more information, visit

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