NEW YORK — President Barack Obama signed into law in late November the Sunscreen Innovation Act.
The Sunscreen Innovation Act (S. 2141) modifies the Food and Drug Administration's review process that determines if certain ingredients in non-prescription sunscreens are generally recognized as safe and effective. The bill would require that the agency adhere to specific timelines and issue orders relating to such ingredients in sunscreen products.
The last over-the-counter sunscreen ingredient to be approved by FDA was in the 1990s. Since 2002, eight new sunscreen applications have been filed and are still awaiting review 12 years later.
The PASS Coalition applauded the president for signing the act.
“The President’s approval of the Sunscreen Innovation Act demonstrates that the White House and Congress agree that FDA should ensure all sunscreens receive a transparent review within a predictable timeframe. With this law, Congress has helped answer the U.S. Surgeon General's Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer. The PASS Coalition and other stakeholders will now focus on working with FDA to guarantee the new law is implemented as quickly as possible,” stated Michael Werner, PASS Coalition Policy Advisor.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer diagnosed in the United States. Each year there are more new cases of skin cancer — including melanoma — than the combined incidence of breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer and colon cancer. On average, one person dies every hour from melanoma, the deadliest of the skin cancers because of its ability to move quickly and spread to distant organs in the body, and melanoma rates are rising dramatically across demographics. Over the past 40 years, melanoma rates have increased 800% among young women and 400% among young men, the PASS Coalition stated.