Hoping to facilitate conversations between patients and their healthcare providers, AstraZeneca has unveiled “Get Real,” a campaign marketing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease inhaler Breztri Aerosphere. The specific motivation behind the effort is to educate patients on flare-ups associated with COPD and give them better tools to discuss these exacerbations with their doctors.

“Less than 2% of COPD patients know what an exacerbation is, or the fact it can cause permanent lung damage,” said AstraZeneca executive director of inhaled, respiratory marketing Domenick Fanelli. “As a result of that, very unfortunately, they justify what they call bad days and flare-ups as part of the disease, and they don’t really understand there’s an opportunity for protection from these flare-ups.”

Brenda McCall, AstraZeneca senior director of inhaled, respiratory marketing, added that the campaign aims to instruct COPD patients that disease maintenance should go beyond simply improved breathing. Additionally, it is designed to reset their expectations about treatment to focus on protection and prevention.

“We wanted to make sure that [patients] paid attention and that they understood that there’s more to COPD than breathing better,” McCall explained.

The commercial starts out with an animated sequence before transitioning into the real world – which, to hear McCall tell it, signifies a normal day for a COPD patient. “The patient portrayed in this is walking around doing normal things, and I can tell you that it’s incredibly important for a COPD patient to be able to walk around and to be able to bend over and pick something up,” she explained. 

“Any time you do an ad like the one we just did, your ambition is to engage patients and to connect with patients,” Fanelli added. “At the end of the day, you want to improve care.”