IPA Effectiveness Awards 2010: Gold Award - Stroke Awareness

Title: How the Department of Health's Stroke Awareness campaign acted fast

Client: Department of Health

Entrant: DLKW

Author: Charlie Snow, DLKW

Contributing authors: Dan Gearing, DLKW; Jonathan Buck, Pau Torres, Fuel; Sam Bevans, Luther Pendragon; Pete Kemp, MEC

Credited companies - Creative agency: DLKW; media agency: MEC; PR: Luther Pendragon; data analysts: Fuel

Media used: Leafleting, microsite, newspapers, online display, outdoor, PR, radio, search, TV


By heightening awareness of the signs to look out for and the action to take when someone suffers a stroke, the campaign helped save 642 people from death or serious disability, and achieved a payback of £3.20 for every £1 spent.


There are approximately 110,000 strokes per year in England alone, but there remains a worrying level of ignorance among the general public as to how to spot the symptoms of stroke and what to do as a result. A multichannel campaign, aimed at a core elderly audience, pinpointed when stroke happens, the signs to look out for, and the action that needs to be taken with a memorable acronym, F.A.S.T: (face; arms; speech; time to call 999). The campaign successfully changed behaviour fast: within a year, an estimated 9,864 more people got to hospital faster, 642 of whom were saved from death or serious disability via clot-busting treatment. It achieved a payback of £3.20 for every £1 spent.


F.A.S.T was a brilliant mnemonic that brought it home what to do if somebody's having a stroke and will, without doubt, save lives. Measuring change in a case like this is an incredibly difficult task, but it was done in a very compelling way.

Jude Bridge, director of marketing, campaigns and communications, Save the Children.