The Sun Smart program which told us all to Slip, Slop, Slap to reduce the rates of skin cancer, seems to have worked.

A recent study surveyed more than 13,000 people in Melbourne from 1987, just before the program began, through to 2017.

It found that likelihood of people using one or more sun protection behaviours on summer weekends was three times higher in the 90s than before the program began and that these improvements were sustained into the 2000s and continued to increase in the 2010s.

The authors conclude that the findings are consistent with SunSmart having contributed to a reduction in melanoma among younger people.

“Although definitive evidence of the impact of the SunSmart program on skin cancer rates remains elusive, prevention programs should be supported given that lifelong protection is beneficial in reducing the risk of skin cancer,” the study says.