DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES
Know the Risks Campaign
Over the course of the last two decades, the FDA has approved and championed the use of various treatments including buprenorphine for medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to combat Opioid Use Disorder (OUD). During that time, they also set forth a comprehensive set of rules which, when combined with counseling and behavioral therapies, provides a whole-patient approach to the treatment of opioid dependency. When taken as prescribed, buprenorphine is both safe and effective. While the numbers of opioid-related deaths in Montgomery County are trending below both the nation and the state of Maryland overall, they are still, nonetheless alarming, with 106 reported deaths in the county alone in 2017.
Through a prior Montgomery County task order, the Local Behavioral Health Authority (LBHA) Division of the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) created a public service announcement (PSA) designed to communicate the features and benefits of buprenorphine and MAT to various stakeholders within the community, including the general public and those in the medical field. This task order was to create and implement a campaign (Know the Risks) designed to facilitate widespread distribution of the PSA throughout the county and then to support that distribution with a creative information campaign designed to elevate and maximize its impact to the target audiences.
To deliver the PSA message to our target audiences, we relied on a variety of different tactics with multiple touch points. More than 140 specialty promotional items, in the form of an oversized pill bottle filled with a flash drive containing our PSA video, were delivered directly to physicians and qualified practitioners in the county. The PSA was also submitted to Washington, DC metro area radio and television stations which had a heavy concentration of County listeners. We converted the video PSA’s into :15 and :30 audio versions for use on radio stations. To supplement our PSAs, we ran a geo-targeted advertising campaign on Facebook and created and distributed a press release to area reporters.
The PSA ran on a variety of television, cable, and radio stations in the marketing, including WRC Ch 4 (NBC), WUSA Ch 9 (CBS), WDVM Independent TV, Comcast TV (Montgomery County), WTOP (All News), WHUR 96.3 (Urban), WASH-FM 97.1 (Mix & Variety), DC101 (Alternative), WMZQ 98.7 (Country), Big 100 (Classic Rock), Hot 99.5 (DC’s #1 Hit Station), Cool Oldies (70’s & 80’s Hits), and 104.7 Wonk-FM (News & Talk). Comcast Digital TV delivered more than 77,000 streaming impressions, while Facebook ads reached 74,000 people (viewed ad once) with a total of 175,281 impressions (number of times our message was on screen) delivered.