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La Roche-Posay, Mollie Biggane Melanoma Foundation partner to protect cancer patients


NEW YORK — Skin care brand La Roche-Posay is partnering with Mollie's Fund, the Mollie Biggane Melanoma Foundation, in its mission to increase awareness for melanoma prevention.

Touched by the Mollie Biggane story — the college sophomore was diagnosed with melanoma and died at age 20 — La Roche-Posay is donating 10,000 full-size pieces of its Anthelios 45 ultra light sunscreen fluid to cancer patients who currently are undergoing treatment and are at high risk because of compromised immune systems.

The Mollie Biggane Melanoma Foundation, created in Biggane's memory, increases awareness for melanoma prevention, provides information and services on skin cancer detection and supports melanoma patients with education on treatment options.

According to The Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States, with more than 1 million skin cancers diagnosed annually. Of those diagnosed cases, about 65% of melanoma cases and about 90% of non-melanoma cases are associated with exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Additionally, new studies show links between melanoma and other forms of cancer; one such study indicated that women with melanoma have a higher risk of other malignancies, including breast cancer.

"Through our extensive research and education we know that there is a strong link between melanoma and other types of cancer," explained Yannick Raynaud, general manager of La Roche-Posay. "We feel a social obligation to educate and provide assistance where necessary, and while donating tubes of sunscreen may seem like a simple gesture, it could actually make a significant difference to these patients who often have compromised immune systems and therefore experience a greater sensitivity to the sun."

This donation is an extension of the company's SOS — Save Our Skin campaign, which aims to not only inform Americans about the dangers of UV rays and the importance of sun safety, but to also incite behavioral change, such as incorporating sun protection into one's daily routine and visits to dermatologists for regular skin checks. Now in its third year, the focus of the SOS program continues to be education and skin checks, the campaign's two most important tenets.

Mollie's Fund will distribute 10,000 pieces of Anthelios 45 ultra light sunscreen fluid to cancer centers across the country, with 9,500 pieces reaching those in need at The Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Fla. A portion of this donation will help support The Moffitt Cancer Center's Mole Patrol, a skin cancer screening program that travels to venues around Florida to offer free skin screenings, sunscreen samples and valuable sun safety education to the public. The remaining 500 units will be distributed at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York and Winthrop-University Hospital and Mercy Medical Center in Long Island, N.Y.

Anthelios 45 ultra light sunscreen fluid for face from La Roche-Posay has a suggested retail price of $29.50 and can be purchased at select physicians' offices, as well as select CVS/pharmacy, Ulta, Walgreens and Duane Reade locations.

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