Australian Coat of Arms

Member for Blaxland

Shadow Minister for Housing and Homelessness 

Shadow Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government

 

Melanoma

Mr CLARE (Blaxland) (13:53): Two years ago I was diagnosed with cancer: a malignant melanoma. Melanoma is no joke. It kills one Australian every six hours. It kills more Aussies than anyone else in the world on a per-capita basis. But this year, we've seen a big drop in the number of Australians that have been diagnosed with melanoma. It's dropped by about 20 per cent. It's the lowest number that we've seen in the last 12 years. But I have to tell you that this is not good news.

The only reason that this has happened is that fewer of us have gone to the doctor this year to get a skin check.

This is one of the deadliest, long-term legacies of lockdown; COVID and lockdowns have meant fewer of us have gone to the doctor to get a skin check. That means those melanomas are still out there, growing and spreading. The deeper they grow, and the further they spread, the more chance there is that they will kill you; that's just a fact.

I make this plea: today is the first day of summer—and we all know what that means; it's a time when we get out in the sun—but, before you go to the beach, before you organise that barbecue, before you go out and have a great time at the best time of the year in the best country in the world, please go and get a skin check. It might just save your life. It certainly saved mine.