PRWeek Healthcare & Pharma Comms Awards winners: Best Public Health Awareness Campaign (Excluding COVID-19)

The winner in this category is I Am number 17 – a Campaign to Raise Awareness of Rare Disease Across the UK by Hill+Knowlton Strategies for Takeda UK.

This campaign to raise awareness of rare diseases in the UK focused on grassroots and 'grasstops' (those with real power to change things).

Take me back to the Healthcare & Pharma Comms Awards winners page

Seventeen people living with a rare disease were asked to become 'changemakers'. They were paired with 17 artists to represent their experience of living with a rare disease through art, displayed at the Oxo Gallery in January 2020 - nearly 600 people visited over the three days. The launch event began with speeches from Jon Neal, MD of Takeda UK, along with two of the changemakers. A video produced by Baroness Blackwood was shown, relaying the importance of rare diseases.

The changemakers promoted the campaign on their own channels to their own communities and spoke to local media.

The campaign generated 59 broadcast pieces with a potential reach of over four million, while the reach from traditional press exceeded 12m. There were 6,674 webpage visits in the first two weeks of the campaign and 486 social posts using the campaign hashtag, with no paid spend.

In November 2020, 17 weeks of brand-new content, created by the changemakers, began, ranging from blog posts, to podcasts, to videos, exploring their experiences of rare disease, and the more recent impact of COVID-19. In the first week of new content, the campaign received 147 social posts in support, including from UK patient organisations. There were 338 total engagements and a reach of 21,061.

Judge's comment: 

"Really cool creative execution, great results and overall campaign."

Highly commended: 

Stepping Up the Fight Against Malaria in Times of COVID-19 by Grayling, The RBM Partnership to End Malaria, Malaria No More, Malaria No More UK, Speak Up Africa, X3M Nigeria

This campaign's message was that countries didn’t need to choose between fighting malaria or COVID-19 but should fight both. Action included: conducting a virtual social cheer for health heroes across the world on World Malaria Day; developing the "Mosquito Clap Challenge" - a dance move based on the motion of swatting a fly; engaging influencers through the Bigger Picture campaign; and developing a fortnightly media briefing series. In total 108 pieces of coverage were secured on World Malaria Day, reaching c.424m people. The Bigger Picture campaign was seen by nine million people and saw #ZeroMalaria trending on Twitter. World Malaria Day had 524m impressions on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, with three times as many social media impressions on the day itself versus 2019.


Every Mind Matters by Freuds’ Health & Behaviour Change unit for Public Health England

Introducing the Thyrojis by Porter Novelli for Merck

Maybe It's Not Thrush by Brands2Life for Balance Activ

The Presbyopia by Acuvue by FleishmanHillard Fishburn for Johnson & Johnson Vision

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