Sunscreens for people living with albinism remain unaffordable

By Memory Chamisa

AFFORDABILITY of sun screens for people living with albinism remains a cause for concern as the lotions are beyond the reach of many.

People living with albinism in Chitungwiza this Thursday received a shot in the arm as they got 1 000 bottles of sunscreens lotions from well-wishers.

A 250ml bottle of sunscreen lotion costs an average of US$25 and one needs two or more to last a month.

“The way other drugs are made affordable and some like ARVs are free, is the same way it must be done for sunscreens. We need to be given for free.

“My skin was cracking because I was not applying these lotions and if I continue not using them the skin will be greatly affected which may result in skin cancer, so my appeal is for the government to produce and make them available free of charge.

“We are grateful for the lotions but the government needs to put a waiver for those who import them as in pharmacies and shops sunscreen lotions are expensive.

“Unfortunately, import duty put on skin care products required by people with Albinism makes the prices beyond the reach of many,” said a group of people living with albinism.

Representative of the well-wishers, Takunda Musangeya spoke on the need to establish local manufacturers to ease the burden on the end users.

“There is need to have companies who are able to manufacture sunscreen lotions so that when they sell them, people are able to afford. As it stands only one pharmacist is producing these sunscreens we are handing over here today and if he gets more partners and funding the bill is less on our brothers and sisters living with Albinism,” he said.

People with albinism have extremely sensitive skin and therefore need sunscreen lotion to protect them from ultraviolet rays.