In a bid to bolster flagging sales of its Hepatitis C drug franchise comprised of Sovaldi, Harvoni and Epclusa, Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD) has launched an awareness campaign targeted at baby boomers.
The campaign is based on the high probability of individuals born between 1945 and 1965 (often called baby boomers) being vulnerable to the disease.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages people born from 1945 to 1965 to go for a Hepatitis C test, claiming that “While anyone can get hepatitis C, 3 in 4 people with hepatitis C were born from 1945–1965.”
The Gilead ad campaign, called “Forgotten Virus,” targets more than 75 million individuals born during that period. It talks about the serious threats of the deadly disease, while citing the lack of awareness about the disease. Encouraging such baby boomers to necessarily go for Hep C testing, the narrator cites cases of individuals who may have the disease but aren’t even aware of it.
With sales of its primary hepatitis C medicine Harvoni tanking by one-third in 2016, the new initiatives to encourage a high-probability target patient group to get themselves checked and assuring them that an effective cure for the disease is readily available, Gilead aims to partially fill up for the increasing sales void. (See also, Gilead Earnings on Tap: Can Hepatitis-C Recover?)
David Johnson, Gilead VP, U.S. sales and marketing for liver diseases claimed that the initial response to the campaign has been “very positive,” with high rates of engagement across different channels, including call centers, social media, and healthcare providers, reports FiercePharma. The campaign is run across TV, digital, paid search and point-of-care, with social media engagement planned in the near future. (See also, Gilead To Focus on NASH and HIV Drugs In 2017.)