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The Say Communications Award for Excellence in Product/Brand Communications

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Winner

Tamiflu

by Virgo Health for Roche


Summary of work

Tamiflu

Since the AllTrials petition opened in 2013, clinical trial transparency has been at the top of the industry agenda, drawing political and media scrutiny. Often at the centre of this has been Roche, with Tamiflu becoming the poster child for the data-sharing debate.

To ensure this negativity was decreased, an informed risk strategy was executed to defend Roche’s reputation, the licensing systems it operates under and to instil confidence in a medicine aimed at protecting public health. A sustained and substantial communication effort led to an 80% decline in negative media reporting, upholding Roche’s business interests in the UK and clearly mitigating clinical concerns regarding the efficacy and safety of Tamiflu. While communications formed part of a broader management strategy, it played an integral role in ensuring public health organisations have continued to recommend Tamiflu. The 2014/2015 flu season saw a 66% increase in Tamiflu sales versus the 2013/2014 season. Most importantly, despite being at the centre of this high-profile and wide-reaching issue, a 2014 independent survey by PatientView saw Roche rise from 6th to equal 5th in overall ranking of corporate reputation and from 10th to 4th for its reputation for producing high-quality products of benefit to patients.

Judges comments

This is an extremely bold and innovative approach to the issue, which shows courage. It is very powerful in the way in which it changes perspectives by starting with a negative issue and turning it around. The supporting comments from Ben Goldacre are both significant and impressive.


Finalists

Ensuring balance while enabling CHANGE: Introduction of a novel treatment option for alcohol dependence in the UK - by Clark Health Communications for Lundbeck UK Ltd

Managing IBS Better Together - by Pegasus for Buscopan IBS Relief

Raising brand awareness of 23andMe - by Weber Shandwick for 23andMe


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