Doctors say letting children get sunburnt is abuse

Australia's leading doctors are calling parents who let their children get sunburnt child abusers.

Australian Medical Association NSW President Dr Brad Frankum said letting your child be severely burnt borders on negligence.

"It's no different to burning your kid with something else.

"If it happens repeatedly then that would be quite abusive really."

In Australia and New Zealand, the extreme UV levels mean it can take just 10 minutes to get burnt.

Optometrists have also warned of the danger of sunburn to children's eyes, saying it can cause cataracts and eye cancer when they are older.