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There are two main types of skin cancer – melanoma and non-melanoma.
Melanoma is the most serious kind of skin cancer and New Zealand has the highest incidence rate in the world.
Non-melanoma skin cancers are far more common than melanoma. However, they tend to be less serious than melanoma (as long as they are treated).
Melanoma is the fourth most common cancer in New Zealand, with more than 2000 cases a year. Every year, around 370 people die from it.
About 70 percent of melanoma cases occur in people aged 50 or older.
Most melanomas are caused by exposure to ultra violet radiation in sunlight. Sun exposure – particularly severe sunburns during childhood and adolescence – give rise to a greater risk of melanoma later in life.
Find out more from the Ministry
The Ministry leads a national work programme that provides a strategic focus for cancer control, and for system-wide improvements across the spectrum of cancer services.
Melanoma: Information for you, your family, whānau and friends
Available from the Ministry of Health.
Melanoma Foundation of New Zealand
The Melanoma Foundation of New Zealand is a registered charitable trust. Its website provides information for people affected with melanoma.
Thecountry’s largest source of information about cancer and its effects. This website provides information on types of cancer (including skin cancers), diagnosis, methods of treatment and advice on living with cancer. You can read information online or as free printed booklets or information sheets.
Facts about skin cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment, including information in the Slip, Slop, Slap and Wrap campaign to reduce exposure to cancer causing ultraviolet radiation from the sun.
The Ministry of Health has funded free access to this British Medical Journal website for people browsing the web from New Zealand. It provides information on different cancers and describes treatments that work or are likely to work, the harms and benefits, treatments that are unlikely to work or may be harmful and information on tests and operations.
Better Health Channel
The Better Health Channel was established by the Victorian (Australia) State Government. It provides a wide range of health and medical information on conditions including cancer.