Panama City firefighters receive free skin care screenings

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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Did you know firefighters tend to be diagnosed with melanoma at younger ages than adults in the general population?

Dr. Ward said he felt it was time to do something for first responders after they've done so much for us. (WJHG/WECP)

Friday, Dr. Jon Ward with Dermatology Specialists of Florida conducted free skin cancer screenings for Panama City firefighters. Dr. Ward said he felt it was time to do something for first responders after they've done so much for us.

"They're really taking their health seriously, which I'm so excited about because they save our lives every day and if we get a chance to save their lives, it's just a gratifying experience," Dr. Ward said.

All the firefighters had to do was fill out some paperwork, and Dr. Ward checked their skin for abnormal moles. He paid close attention to size, shape, and color.

"We're not 100% sure why they're a higher risk, but the theory is that they're out there battling fires and there's soot that contains carcinogens, and that gets on their skin," Dr. Ward said. "Especially if the fire is during the day, then they're getting sun exposure on top of that."

More than 25 firefighters came out for their free screening.

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