World Hepatitis Alliance seeks agency support for World Hepatitis Days

The World Hepatitis Alliance is on the hunt for an agency to handle a £450,000 brief supporting the next two World Hepatitis Days.

Awareness: a World Hepatitis Day ad in 2008
Awareness: a World Hepatitis Day ad in 2008

As of 2011, World Hepatitis Day, held on 28 July, became only the fourth disease-specific official health day to be recognised by the World Health Organization. The other three are for Aids, TB and malaria.

For the past three years, the WHA has worked with Fleishman-Hillard on raising awareness of the disease and World Hepatitis Day.

In 2009 the agency's work for the WHA won it a PRWeek Award.

The decision to repitch is understood to be related to an increased remit for the WHA. Since the partnership with the WHO in 2010, the brief has grown from covering 68 countries to all 198 WHO members.

In a document seen by PRWeek, the WHA said it was looking for agency to work on a global brief 'to raise the profile of chronic viral hepatitis' across the WHO's member countries. The brief document asks potential agencies to 'bear in mind' that the 2012 World Hepatitis Day follows the opening of the London Olympics, falling on the first day of the Games.

The expected annual budget for the account is £200,000 for 2012 and £250,000 for 2013. A shortlist of three agencies will be invited to pitch in November.

The successful agency will be required to target national governments, health policy makers, the general public, medical professionals and mainstream media outlets and will also be expected to harness social media in its campaigning.

It will be employed by the WHA and will report directly to either president Charles Gore, or international relations director Raquel Jose, both of whom are based in London.

According to the WHA, 500 million people globally have chronic hepatitis B or C - 15 times the number known to have HIV/Aids. One million people die every year as a result of the condition.

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