The title goal of Skin Care For All is to aid the adaptation and self management of community dermatology, to actively engage in our surroundings as health practitioners to better the lives of those living with the effects of poor skin health. This must be achieved in part through alliances. Health for all is Utopian, skincare for all and its funding is not. The endpoint is the education of a work force with evidence based intervention from the public health syllabus presented on this web site.
Appeals for resources should be a combination of an assessment of burden, proof of the ‘Capacity to Benefit’, ‘How it is Done’ using a public health frame work, and a list of partners who will help to achieve qualitative skin care. This should help to upgrade the potential of our profession to provide Skin Care for All: Community Dermatology. The end point is the education of a work force with an evidence based intervention programme.
The International Society of Dermatology, Tropical Ecologic and Geographic was launched in 1965 with a name that clearly indicated its focus. Later it was renamed The International Society of Dermatology (ISD). The International Committee of the International League of Dermatological Societies, of which the ISD is a member, in 1987 launched the International Foundation for Dermatology. Focusing mainly on education it perceived that the burden of skin disease was poorly managed in the developing world. It chose Africa to launch a Regional Dermatology Training Centre in Tanzania and went to both the World Health Organisation and UNESCO to launch its programme of Healthy Skin For All.
This was prepared with the education and science divisions of UNESCO. It was named UNIDERM and helped to achieve Official Relations with WHO. It was a five year plan for the International League of Dermatological Societies prepared in the first five years (1991-96) of the International Foundation for Dermatology. The programme was later given the name of Healthy Skin for All.
Community Dermatology embraces common skin diseases, wounds, burns, lymphoedema and neglected tropical diseases such as leprosy. Its interventions are low cost. It concerns populations of individuals rather than individuals in a one to one relationship. It requires data on prevalence and human resources. It trains community based workers to manage common problems of the skin. Its interventions are low cost and address the needs of those with few resources; though not exclusively. These may be isolated, periurban or mobile communities, often against a threatening background such as strife or climate change.
Give every child the best start in life. Enable all children, young people and adults to maximise their capabilities and have control over their lives. Create fair employment and food and work for all. Ensure a healthy standard of living for all. Create and develop healthy and sustainable places and communities. Strengthen the role and impact of ill-health prevention. Focus on poverty and health inequalities induced by social exclusion, unhealthy living habits and societal stressors.
Most urgently needed is the finance to develop the skin carers themselves. Many of these carers work, and will continue to find a place, in well resourced environments, but especially hoped for is to employ those who would like to work in the resource poor world without damaging their career opportunities in the developed world. They should receive guidance on what to do, should be observed and assessed of their progress, given as much support as possible and be rewarded by due recognition for achievement. They should not be overloaded with evidence based technology but must have time to counteract the loneliness and isolation of many who suffer from the poor health of their skin. This can be done by knocking on the door, bringing a smiling face and being recognised as a friend.
The people and quotes seen in this site and booklet are real yet come from a variety of sources. No quotes are directly associated with the figure they appear beside. They are simply collated research ephemera intended to better illustrate the themes.