Encourage patients to share their stories

Submissions will support Academy’s skin cancer outreach efforts

elizabeth-martin-head-shot.jpgBy Elizabeth Martin, MD, FAAD

Patient stories serve to put a face on skin cancer, communicating the effects of this disease to the public in a concrete, memorable way, while also reminding other patients that they’re not alone. By encouraging your patients to share their stories with the Academy, you could make a real difference in our outreach efforts — and the lives of skin cancer patients across the country.

As the Academy prepares for Melanoma Monday® and Skin Cancer Awareness Month in May, you can contribute to our SPOT Skin Cancer™ campaign by asking your skin cancer patients to submit their stories. Visit the Media Relations Toolkit for resources that can help you encourage submissions.

The Academy shares patient stories with the public via its website and social media channels. Additionally, the Communications team maintains a directory of patients whom the media can interview for their skin cancer articles.

The Academy’s SPOT Skin Cancer™ website includes a library of patient stories, which can serve as a great resource for those who have been recently diagnosed. I encourage you to direct your patients to this site, where they can not only read these stories but also access a wealth of information on skin cancer prevention and detection.

Patient stories are a valuable tool for not only promoting skin cancer prevention and early detection, but also providing support and inspiration for skin cancer patients. If your patients are interested in raising awareness and willing to share their experiences, ask them to visit www.aad.org/yourstory and submit their story today.

Dr. Martin is in private practice at Pure Dermatology and Aesthetics in Hoover, Ala., and serves as chair of the AAD Council on Communications.