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Old 03-07-2005, 04:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Tanning Equipment Regulations Updated


OTTAWA, March 7 /CNW Telbec/ - Health Minister Ujjal Dosanjh announcedtoday that amendments to the Radiation Emitting Devices Regulations (TanningEquipment) which modernize the current standards to address the new technologybeing used for today's more powerful tanning devices, came into force onFebruary 23, 2005 with their publication in the Canada Gazette - Part II.



"The new regulations give tanning-equipment users better information onthe harmful effects of ultraviolet exposure," said Minister Dosanjh. "Usersnow have the opportunity to make more informed decisions when using tanningequipment."



It is now well recognized in the scientific and medical communities thatoverexposure to ultraviolet radiation can lead to skin and eye damage and islinked to the development of skin cancer, the most common type of cancer inCanada. Overexposure is any exposure to ultraviolet radiation that exceeds theamount needed for vitamin D production. Tanning is not safe: it can cause skindamage and can promote skin cancer.



The Radiation Emitting Devices Act prohibits or restricts the sale, re-sale, lease or importation of products that are, or are likely to be, adanger to the health of the public. Under the authority of the Act, theRadiation Emitting Devices Regulations (Sunlamps) were introduced in 1980 toprotect sunlamp users from ultraviolet overexposure effects by restricting thetime of exposure. New technology and tanning equipment designs, in addition torecent scientific studies, showed that the 1980 requirements needed to beupdated to ensure safer use of the new equipment.



The Radiation Emitting Devices Regulations (Tanning Equipment) werepublished in the Canada Gazette, Part I, on March 13, 2004. Following thepublication, interested parties were given an opportunity to provide comments.The proposed amendments were revised, taking the suggestions of therespondents into account.



The Radiation Emitting Devices Regulations (Tanning Equipment) set outthe technical requirements for modern tanning devices and their replacementparts for sale, resale, importation or lease in Canada as follows:



- Manufacturers must now recommend a maximum exposure time for the user's first exposure. This exposure time depends on the characteristics of the lamps and varies according to the type of tanning equipment.



- Manufacturers must now recommend a maximum number of exposure times per year. The number of exposures needed to reach that dose depends on the characteristics of the lamps and varies according to the type of tanning equipment.



- Introduces a way to calculate the exposure times that takes into account skin sensitivity and the characteristics of the lamps.



- Provide warnings to consumers related to the use of tanning equipment. The new warning signs must be permanently affixed to the external surface of the tanning equipment and bear the information, clearly legible, and readily accessible to view by the user immediately before use.



The Radiation Emitting Devices Regulations (Tanning Equipment) apply onlyto equipment sold or resold after the amendments come into force. They are notretroactive.



Health Canada's changes to the Radiation Emitting Devices Regulations(Tanning Equipment) recognize the input from the provinces, radiationprotection authorities, the medical community and concerned citizens whorequested that Health Canada regulate sunlamps more stringently. Regulationson the use of tanning equipment do not exist at the provincial/territorial levels.



Health Canada Inspectors will continue compliance monitoring andenforcement under the authority of the Radiation Emitting Devices Act and itsRegulations. Ultraviolet lamps used under professional supervision by medical doctorsto treat certain skin conditions are considered medical devices and,therefore, are regulated under the Food and Drugs Act (Medical DevicesRegulations). For more information: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hecs-sesc/ccrpb/publication/guidelines_tanning_salon_owners_operator s_users/toc.htm



For further information: Media Inquiries: Margot Geduld/Carole Saindon, Health Canada, (613) 957-1588; Adèle Blanchard, Office of Minister Dosanjh - Minister of Health, (613) 957-0200; Public Inquiries: (613) 957-2991, Health Canada news releases are available on the Internet at http://media.health-canada.net

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