At Mother’s Day celebrations in many homes this week, mom likely ended up doing the dishes or other work on a day designed to celebrate her. The tendency of many mothers to put their families first — sometimes at the expense of their own health — informs “Hear Your Heart,” which attempts to eliminate disparities in cardio care among Black and Latina women.
The campaign is backed by Boehringer Ingelheim and Eli Lilly, which jointly market Jardiance.
A patient testimonial — the story of Tannie, a 60-year-old woman who learned to live with her heart failure — provides a point of entry on the “Hear Your Heart” website. There is also video from Dr. Alanna Morris, who shares advice on navigating lifestyle modifications necessary for heart health. All campaign content, as well as additional materials created specifically for Latina women, will be available in Spanish by fall 2022.
“Women delay their own treatment, and they are often undertreated,” noted Anita Holz, executive director and therapeutic head of cardiometabolism, clinical development and medical affairs at Boehringer Ingelheim, adding that the issue is particularly acute among Black and Latina women. “Their outcomes are significantly worse. Women diagnosed with heart failure die at a rate about 50% greater than men.”
Holz hopes the message that women will take from “Hear Your Heart” is that they should prioritize their heart health. “You need to make those essential lifestyle changes, manage your emotional well-being and make sure you have that support system in place to help you. Whether that’s a spouse, children or friends, pull them in.”
Boehringer U.S. head of cardiovascular portfolio, commercial Elena Livshina believes the patient-to-patient approach is likely to resonate. “The most impactful way to reach our audience is if they hear from people like them,” she explained. “We want to put the patients who are living with heart failure front and center.”
While the patient testimonials are at the heart of campaign’s planned social and earned media push, Livshina thinks that the most effective way to spread the “Hear Your Heart” message will be within communities by old-fashioned word-of-mouth.
“When people talk to their loved ones about the resources that are available, they empower them to seek help as well,” she noted.
Livshina acknowledged that, high-profile campaign or no, racial health disparities will remain an enormous challenge, and one the industry needs to confront head-on.
“There is so much more we can do,” she said. “But we’ll start with some real personal stories and real journeys, and we will build from there. We want to be seen as a partner and make sure unbranded educational content is available to show what is possible and encourage people to seek better outcomes.”