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Are you number 12?

Disease awareness case study: raising awareness of viral hepatitis on a global scale

Around the world, 500 million people – one in 12 of the global population – are infected with viral hepatitis B or C and one million people die each year from these diseases. Despite the huge disease burden, and alarming mortality rate, viral hepatitis is still not a priority for many governments and does not garner the media and public attention needed to effect change.

The World Hepatitis Day 'Am I Number 12?' campaign aimed to put viral hepatitis on the global health agenda, alongside the 'big three' in global health – HIV, malaria and tuberculosis. In 2007, the World Hepatitis Alliance (WHA) engaged Fleishman-Hillard to develop a five-year campaign to provide a framework of activities for over 200 patient groups around the world. The campaign needed to take viral hepatitis awareness, advocacy, fundraising and capacity-building to a wider audience than ever before. Activities also needed to address stigma and misconceptions, as well as take into account the diverse patient population and need for adaptable programmes for patient groups.


The campaign action in Bangladesh
The campaign put viral hepatitis on the global health agenda


Awareness raising: 
The 'Am I Number 12?' campaign communicated the shocking statistic that one in 12 people worldwide is living with either chronic viral hepatitis B or hepatitis C.

This campaign 'brand' was translated into over 40 languages and attention-grabbing materials were developed, in seven languages, including media resources, newsletters, posters, postcards and billboards.

Media partnerships were developed to deliver a full marketing programme of activities.

Global website and blog served as a campaign hub with activities driving traffic to global and national advocacy sites.

Advocacy/public affairs:
Patient groups were supported in their government engagement through the '12 Asks' campaign that sought policy commitments to the challenges posed by viral hepatitis.

Comprehensive global lobbying campaign continues to encourage support from governments for a World Health Organisation (WHO) resolution on viral hepatitis.

Formal endorsements have been secured from numerous high profile non-government organisations. In order to inform and guide the campaign, the WHA recruited a 12-strong public health panel consisting of medical experts from across the world with significant experience in hepatitis and/or large public health campaigns.

Capacity building: 
Comprehensive fundraising, disease awareness and advocacy toolkits were developed in seven languages; Arabic, English, French, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

A creative competition was launched to encourage development of hepatitis visuals and promoted to country groups.

A global capacity building tour was developed for WHA representatives to create new relationships in key countries and to facilitate discussions on topical issues encountered on the journey, through the 'Am I Number 12?' blog.

The campaign continues to deliver on the strategic objectives of the WHA five-year plan, with:
• Over 700 events held around the world to mark World Hepatitis Day 2008 and 2009
• 3,250 pieces of coverage reaching an estimated audience of 1bn people
• 1,400 advertising billboards secured in 40 different cities
• 100,000 people reached through online social media including 43,000 global website visitors from 137 countries
• Viral hepatitis added to agenda of the 62nd World Health Assembly and pledges of support secured from several governments
• Kuwait and Scotland officially signed up to the '12 Asks' policy campaign, and the WHA received ongoing support from further governments
• Endorsements from international NGOs – including Médicins Sans Frontières, GAVI Alliance and the Pan American Health Organisation. Letters of support were also received from former US President Bill Clinton and current US President Barack Obama
• 39 entries from 11 countries were received for the first World Hepatitis Day Creative Competition
• The first global compendium for hepatitis, the Hepatitis Atlas, launched on World Hepatitis Day 2008
• Eight countries visited as part of the capacity-building programme which established dialogue with governments, encouraged patient groups to collaborate and helped establish new patient groups
• 2009 campaign increased the WHA's global reach, with activities in the following countries for the first time: Azerbaijan, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ghana, Greece, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Mauritius, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, Taiwan, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

World Hepatitis Day 'Am I Number 12?' 2008-2009 campaign has been a phenomenal success, driven by patient groups, governments and individuals around the world. It has reached millions of people globally and begun the process of
delivering essential policy change at a national and international level.


Client study details

Client: World Hepatitis Alliance (WHA)
Agency: Fleishman-Hillard London
Campaign: World Hepatitis Day 'Am I Number 12?'
Timescale: September 2007 to May 2009

18th February 2010


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