Goodbye 2019

The past year has been a really exciting one for M&F Health with the team enjoying working on some fantastic campaigns. These are some of our campaign highlights!


Make Blood Cancer Visible

For the third year running, we supported Janssen and nine patient groups with their biggest UK awareness campaign, ‘Make Blood Cancer Visible’ in September. The brief this year was to improve earlier recognition and diagnosis of blood cancer by increasing public awareness of the most common signs and symptoms. Building on the success of the previous two years, we worked with Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen who for the first time shared his story about losing his father to a blood cancer at the age of nine. We also worked with four blood cancer patient influencers to share their own personal stories. This package achieved widespread UK broadcast, print and online coverage, as well as considerable social media coverage. We also developed materials to support GPs to ‘Connect the Dots’ of the most common symptoms, which may lead to an increase in earlier diagnosis.


Blood Cancer Dashboard

During Blood Cancer Awareness Month we were pleased to work with Janssen and the Blood Cancer Alliance to develop and launch the Blood Cancer Dashboard, an online resource that shares blood cancer data in a way that allows for in-depth analysis and direct comparison with other common cancers. The Dashboard, which has been warmly welcomed by the blood cancer community and Public Health England, is intended to support service improvement in blood cancer and formed the basis of discussions at a high-level King’s Fund roundtable meeting on how the ambitions set out in the NHS Long Term Plan can be made a reality for people with blood cancer.


UK Malnutrition Awareness Week

Following the extraordinary success of the inaugural UK Malnutrition Awareness Week campaign in 2018, we ran the second year of the campaign for BAPEN and the Malnutrition Task Force. We designed a survey with YouGov that revealed that the public mistakenly believe it is normal to lose weight and become frail as you age. Our media campaign centred around busting this particular myth, and our extensive broadcast coverage meant that we exceeded even our award-winning results of the year before. This year we were able to bring more partners on board to support the messages of UK Malnutrition Awareness Week, and help local nutrition support teams around the country stage local events. We even supported a link up with the North American Awareness Week too.  Overall, over 1000 people were screened for malnutrition risk during the week using a new screening tool, ensuring that medical teams were able to make valuable interventions for people at risk because of their age or disease status. We are already looking forward to next year!


APPG for Axial Spondyloarthritis

In March, we supported the National Axial Spondyloarthritis Society (NASS) to establish the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Axial Spondyloarthritis. Since we established the group we have helped to organise two meetings looking at some of the key issues that face people living with this disease. The group was established to provide national oversight of the implementation of the NICE Guideline and Quality Standard. The group’s first action was to undertake a baseline survey of the commissioning and service arrangements for axial SpA (AS) care in England through a Freedom of Information Request. The results were presented at the groups second meeting with a report set to be published shortly.


Janssen Major Depressive Disorder Policy Workshop / Working Group

M&F Health worked with Janssen to establish a working group on Major Depressive Disorder which included a number of key stakeholders in this area. The group is aiming to help to raise awareness and develop policy levers that can be introduced to help those with severe and treatment resistant forms of depression (TRD). The first workshop was held in December 2019 with a large number of stakeholders all in agreement that this is an area that has been previously under represented. We worked with Janssen to commission research to explore local commissioning priorities and the barriers to effective severe depression service provision. The results of 20 in-depth interviews showed that whilst depression is generally regarded as an important area within the context of mental health services, there was comparatively little focus on severe forms of the condition.


So that’s some of our highlights…. but naturally it’s just the tip of the iceberg. As always, we have enjoyed working with some lovely celebrities, not just Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen but also the fabulous Janice Long, helping them to talk about the things that matter to them. We have produced plenty of standout content, from patient storytelling films, to exciting animations that have garnered huge social media results for our clients. And we’ve supported clients in the delivery of policy campaigns that have made a real impact to the lives of people living with difficult diseases.

As always, we are grateful to our clients for giving us the opportunity to partner with them and help them make a difference. Here’s to a restful Christmas and more of the same in 2020!