Mellors Reay lands task for health service advice line

By OUR PARLIAMENTARY CORRESPONDENT, campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 19 December 1997 12:00AM

Mellors Reay & Partners has triumphed in its first pitch for Government business since winning a place on the Central Office of Information’s roster this summer.

Mellors Reay & Partners has triumphed in its first pitch for

Government business since winning a place on the Central Office of

Information’s roster this summer.



The agency beat Delaney Fletcher Bozell and Leagas Shafron Davis to land

a campaign to promote a 24-hour telephone advice line run by the

National Health Service.



Initially, there will be a pounds 350,000 budget to promote three pilot

schemes in a push from next March, expected to include press and radio.

If the campaigns in Milton Keynes, Lancashire and Tyneside prove a

success, the spend could increase significantly, as the NHS Direct

hotline goes nationwide by 2000.



’We are impressed by Mellors Reay’s approach and creative ideas,’ Romola

Christopherson, director of press and publicity at the Department of

Health, said. ’We are confident it can deliver on a challenging

brief.’



The helpline will be staffed by nurses, and ministers hope it will play

a key role in the ’new NHS’ they unveiled in a white paper last

week.



The aim is to give callers practical advice when they cannot visit their

GP’s surgery or get to a hospital accident and emergency unit.



The scheme is similar to those run in the US, where phone lines have

reduced home visits by doctors and bed occupancy rates in hospitals.



Carol Reay, the Mellors Reay chief executive, said: ’This is a really

pleasing piece of COI business with which to start because the scheme is

so worthwhile. It’s incremental, has no negatives and offers people

extra help.’



This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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