Warning Signs

Marlene sent this along to share with the group.  Below is the explanation of the new ads from the Ontario Stroke Network Team. 

As you may have seen, the new HSFO Warning Signs Campaign has started to be aired on television this week. A key difference in the campaign this time is the inclusion of a reference to the thrombolysis time window. Members of the OSN and OSS ( Dr Sahlas, Sharon Mytka, Nicole Pageau and myself) were consulted on the development of this campaign in relation to both content and messaging.

In anticipation that there may be questions re the objectives and rationale for the development of this campaign, I have asked Krista Orendorff, Senior Specialist, Partner Program, Research Advocacy and Health Promotion to provide some background information for you…

The communication objectives were two-fold:
1. Maintain awareness of the warning signs of stroke;
2. Shift to taking action, knowing what to do and creating a sense of urgency

We tested three different executions against these objectives and one came out stronger in terms of creating a sense of urgency. The selected creative utilized a ‘ticking time bomb’ and stressed the 3.5 hours. While we know that the timeframe for tPA is closer to 4.5, we agreed (with the input of representatives from the stroke community) to lessen the timeframe to ensure people are not waiting until the last minute, as well to align with the Ministry of Health Emergency Health Services Branch Revised Acute Stroke Paramedic Prompt Card.
I wanted to share some of the findings from our focus group testing that will serve to highlight the public perception on the introduction of the 3.5 hour window:

The Bomb creative has high cut-thru potential via a visual/creative approach that stresses the urgency of the situation
Bomb provides new/high impact information, namely the 3.5 hour window for action
Bomb: participants liked the creative hook of the bomb as it immediately brings to mind danger and emergency. The bomb counting down also paired well thematically with the 3.5 hour message, which proved to be new information to the participants
The 3.5 ‘take-action’ window was particularly interesting and new for many as it communicated a sense of urgency with an undertone of hope that would entice many to take action immediately
“To be honest, both (Bomb) and (Signal) were good. I lean towards bomb because it really showed me how important that 3.5 hour window is.”

I think the first thing to bear in mind is that communication messages cannot hit and resonate with every single person all of the time.

However, our focus group research indicated that by introducing the timeframe and bomb within our communication message it helped to deliver a sense or urgency and action. While we understand that not everyone is eligible for tPA, getting people to the ED within a quicker time frame is still best practice and using an actual time allowed us to frame the sense of urgency in a greater fashion than simply asking people to act immediately or as soon as possible.


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