Nudging construction workers towards better sun-safety behaviour: summary of the evidence for practitioners

Amanda Nioi, Charlotte Wendelboe-Nelson, Sue Cowan, Mark Cherrie, Shahzad Rashid, Hilary Cowie, Alice Davis, Peter Ritchie, Terry C. Lansdown, John W. Cherrie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
85 Downloads (Pure)


Excessive exposure to solar ultra-violet (UV) radiation can cause skin cancer, but inadequate exposure to sunlight limits the production of vitamin D. We report a text messaging and supportive smartphone app intervention to reduce UV exposure in the summer and promote vitamin D intake in winter. Results suggest that many workers had insufficient circulating vitamin D in winter, but for the intervention group vitamin D levels increased significantly compared to the control group. In summer, workers were exposed to relatively high UV levels, which were sufficient to importantly increase their risk skin cancer. The sun-safe intervention failed to reduce exposure to solar UV, which we attribute to an entrenched belief that a suntan is desirable. We argue that a more prescriptive risk-based approach is needed to reduce the risk of skin cancer among outdoor construction workers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-33
Number of pages9
JournalPolicy and Practice in Health and Safety
Issue number1
Early online date8 Jan 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • 25(OH)D
  • Sunlight
  • UV
  • construction
  • exposure
  • health promotion
  • outdoor work
  • skin cancer
  • ultraviolet
  • vitamin D

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Safety Research
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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