A new toolkit has been launched to improve diagnosis of skin cancer.
Released by Cancer Research UK, the British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) and Doctors.net.uk, the toolkit provides a range of images from real-life, cases to illustrate which lesions need urgent referral, routine referral or are benign.
The toolkit also includes a forum that enables them to discuss lesions and share experiences and clinical case studies.
Cancer Research UK revealed that rates of people diagnosed with malignant melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, are now five times higher than 40 years ago.
Nina Goad, of the British Association of Dermatologists, said: "Skin cancer is the UK's most common type of cancer – in fact it is more common than all other cancers combined. One of the problems is that GPs receive very limited training in dermatology – as little as a week – and are then expected to be able to recognise cancerous lesions from a whole host of other issues, and to know which to refer urgently.
"Not only is this a problem for the GPs, but it can also delay the patient accessing a Consultant Dermatologist. This toolkit, available across a range of media platforms, is a simple visual guide, highlighting the differences between the many different types of skin cancer and non-cancerous lesions. We hope it will be bookmarked and used regularly by doctors as it is a very valuable tool."