Creativity in healthcare? It's in the Cannes

Last year was the inaugural Lions Health festival of creativity in healthcare. The very fact that it even happened is a surprising success in itself yet our creative confidence, as an industry, felt shaky.

A lot ‘cannes’ happen in a year, says Rebecca Rhodes
A lot ‘cannes’ happen in a year, says Rebecca Rhodes
Did our work stand up to 'Big Cannes', were we worthy of a creative healthcare event at all? 

How could we attract super creative talent to a not-so-sexy industry? Well, as they say, a lot ‘cannes’ happen in a year and in 2015 it appears that healthcare has topped the creative chart.  

The entries doubled and the amount of clients visiting multiplied. ‘Big Cannes’ with its big consumer brands wanted to play. 
The intoxicating combination of social purpose, human-centred design and innovation has resulted in healthcare being at the heart of what really matters – life-changing creativity.  

The jury were knee deep in ideas that were brilliant feats of innovation and creative execution. The discussions went on well into the night – frequently.  

From the Nivea Doll that was designed to teach kids the power of sunblock, to a ‘back-up memory’ app designed to help patients in the early stages of dementia, to the elegantly simple iodine infused bindi that is saving lives of women across India – the work was, and is, awe inspiring.  

It shouldn’t be surprising that one of this year’s biggest campaigns of both Lions Health and Cannes Lions, the brilliant This Girl Can, is firmly rooted in health and wellness.

The festival speakers spoke of empowered patient-centricity and connected health at the speed of life. That fundamentally healthcare is now a consumer industry and, hey, isn’t your health more interesting than a can of Coke and bottle of shampoo?  

No wonder geeky healthcare is suddenly the cool kid on the block. 

So this year it is not so much the question ‘can we stand shoulder to shoulder with other industries in regard to innovation and creativity?’ but the exciting realisation that we are light years ahead.  

This industry really Cannes.  

Rebecca Rhodes is global executive creative director at Virgo Health and a judge in this year's Lions’ Health awards at Cannes

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