Excellence in Public Information or Education: This award recognizes an EMS or non-EMS organization that has developed and implemented an effective public information or education campaign designed to encourage patients, members, or the public to develop or maintain healthy lifestyles, or to more effectively utilize healthcare resources.
KPS|3 for Public Awareness of REMSA MIH Initiatives
Since 2012, when REMSA Health was awarded a Health Care Innovation Grant from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, KPS3 has been sharing the message about the importance of incorporating patient navigation into the region’s EMS system. At that time, KPS3 was tasked with launching a public awareness campaign intended to change behavior related to three key interventions - a Nurse Health Line, Alternative Destination Transport and Community Paramedicine.
While the specific message and program element has changed in the last decade, KPS3 has remained a committed partner in conceptualizing and implementing comprehensive campaigns to promote proper patient navigation. It’s clear the purpose of the campaign is to change behavior (don’t call 911 for non-emergencies) but there are strong attitudes and deeply held values related to the public perception of 911/ambulance transport usage. KPS3 understands these nuances and works with REMSA Health’s PR department, subject matter experts and leaders to figure out how to move the needle on public behavior without threatening the closely-held belief of a right to a timely emergency response and access to quality care.
In 2021, REMSA Health’s Regional Emergency Communications Center managed 276,281 calls. In the same year, the Ground Operations EMTs and paramedics responded to 67,730 calls for 911 service; of that 47,705 patients were transported to the ER. The number of calls and responses is significant and to preserve medical emergency response resources for true emergencies, EMS providers and community members needed to be educated about accessing the right level of care. KPS3 recognized the need for a public relations PESO content model (Paid, Earned, Shared, Owned) which is useful when there is a need to explain complex, in-depth concepts - which mobile integrated health has plenty of.
Under the direction of REMSA Health and with the support of the Washoe County District Board of Health, KPS3 brought a public-facing communications strategy to life to help people understand the appropriate use of medical 911 resources. Named “Choose The Right Care,” the campaign focuses on preserving 911 for emergencies and helping the public embrace alternatives to an ambulance response and/or transport to an emergency room. The campaign reinforces the safety and efficacy of other care pathways including transferring Alpha/Omega calls to a Nurse Health Line, transportation to an alternate destination, a protocol program called “Assess and Refer ” and Treatment in Place via telehealth.
Key elements of the (PESO) communications and content management plan included:
- P - PAID English and Spanish language advertisements were purchased on local buses Four-second animated call to action television station identification ads Sponsor lines on local NPR station Explainer video looped on concourse monitors at local AAA baseball team stadium Sponsorship of a local business networking organization
- E - EARNED 12-minute segment on Face The State (CBS affiliate) Misc morning/evening television news coverage (CBS affiliate) In-studio three-minute television news segment (ABC affiliate) Subject matter expert interview misc morning/evening coverage from pitch (NBC affiliate) Local NPR affiliate reporter ridealong (story scheduled to run in June 2022)
- S - SHARED REMSA Health leaders and supporters, healthcare partners, community influencers and KPS3 staff share organic social media posts on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn and related media coverage links Reno-Sparks Chamber of Commerce membership email inclusion
- O - OWNED ChooseTheRightCare.com - The creative development, design and build-out of an animated and interactive microsite/landing page (available in English and Spanish) which lives on remsahealth.com. This helps visitors understand levels of care based on a few different healthcare scenarios. The site also features contact information for community health resources. An easy-to-understand, animated explainer video was developed to share across REMSA Health’s channels and for community partners and influencers to share, as well. A three minute version and a 30 second version were developed in English and Spanish, as well as with subtitles to ensure as much access to the messaging as possible. Flyer and poster distribution to frequent users and community locations, respectively (ie libraries, pharmacies, etc)
Other strengths of the program: KPS3 committed to a library of consistent creative visuals and easy-to-understand language to help the public understand the key point, despite the delivery channel The focus on using phrases and talking points free from jargon, such as: The 911 call is changing and that’s ok. Thirty percent of the calls REMSA Health receives are for first-aid level care - things like sprained ankles, toothaches and sore throats. Use 911 for emergencies only. A true emergency are things like cardiac arrest, stroke symptoms, uncontrolled bleeding and serious allergic reactions. Helping patients get to the right level of care is safe and is approved by our medical directors. We need the public’s help. It’s ok if a medical dispatcher transfers you to a registered nurse to get care guidance at home. It’s also ok if the paramedics or EMTs that respond to you suggest that you visit a doctor, an urgent care clinic or a pharmacy instead of being transported to the emergency room in an ambulance.
This nominee is not a payer, a hospital system or a hospice agency. They may not be the conventional choice for this award because they are a digital/marketing/communications agency. However, they are most certainly an EMS agency partner. KPS3 describes itself in the following way: We build brands and create technology that move people to action. We don’t fit the mold. A marketing company, a PR firm, a digital agency - none are quite enough. We create brands and advertising campaigns for companies and organizations across the nation. We build enterprise-level web and mobile applications. We handle crisis communications for clients we can’t mention. And we are able to do it all because we have smart, dedicated and well-researched professionals who like debates, data, human psychology and the unexplored. REMSA Health describes KPS3 as: KPS3 is not just a three-plus decade vendor of ours. They are a friend, champion and an extension of our PR team, as well as of the organization. The REMSA Health account team at KPS3 applies strategy, creativity and innovation to our work. They engage us in meaningful dialogue about what we want to achieve because they understand how it improves the quality of life for the people in the communities REMSA Health serves. From their founder who landed REMSA Health as her first client 30 years ago and still contributes to our account to the new college graduate hired to curate our digital content, KPS3 understands the profession of emergency medical services and believes in the future of mobile integrated health.
Date of Implementation: January 2021 (additional phases of the campaign continue to launch)
Description of Outcomes / Utilization / Change
Year to date, there has been an impact of five percent in terms of referring people out of the 911 system, across all alternate care pathways. Resetting expectations for a healthcare model that is more than four decades old is slow-going. KPS3, REMSA Health and the Washoe County Health District understand that the Choose The Right Care campaign is a starting point for helping patients, elected officials, municipal managers, healthcare partners, employees and community influencers understand that the delivery of out-of-hospital healthcare must change. Since it is still in the early stages, research and measurement about reach, awareness and behavior change have not yet been conducted. However, local healthcare partners, as well as elected/appointed officials who have seen elements of the campaign are enthusiastic and invested in supporting the message.
Budget: All of the funds for the Choose The Right Care campaign were invested back into the Washoe County community through funds that REMSA Health pays to the Washoe County District Board of Health for any non-compliant responses.
Total Budget: $72,444
- NPR - $750
- NBC affiliate - $5000
- ChooseTheRightCare.com landing page - $26,581
- Explainer Video - $25,328
- Flyers/Poster/Bus interiors - $2470
- Account coordination - $12,315
Estimated Reach: Since the campaign has only recently fully launched, these figures are preliminary. ChooseTheRightCare.com landing page:
- 630 Unique Pageviews
- Average Time on Page is 2:24
- Explainer video viewing via remsahealth.com: 65 Unique Viewers
- 194 Unique Impressions
- Approximate earned media publicity value: $17,802
- Audience reach for the baseball stadium, NPR, NBC and bus interiors are unknown as these elements are still running.
Assess & Refer Patient Material (English) https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_mrfDYSXJtyOZExkM8dc9odk4Mev_WAj/view?usp=sharing
Assess & Refer Patient Material (Spanish) https://drive.google.com/file/d/1xbdErREKEbXjrmrXdA4-1H0na50h-nD-/view?usp=sharing
Every Call Is Important (English) https://drive.google.com/file/d/1kHD_LxmULFKv0FglkTWXur81C3tF5_13/view?usp=sharing
Every Call Is Important (Spanish) https://drive.google.com/file/d/18d3tgXqmrbasbBTZZoSsRFYqIHncrU1k/view?usp=sharing
Explainer Video https://www.remsahealth.com/choose-the-right-care/about/
Baseball Stadium https://drive.google.com/file/d/1eLzobDX2cOlmYH7cZ0siPXCL-XV62gBw/view?usp=sharing https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Bii1ZAe1oCsWpoWXzHsSntSYkk2vmMY4/view?usp=sharing
Face the State earned media interview https://www.remsahealth.com/news/face-the-state-interview-asks-the-public-to-use-911-appropriately
NPR Ride Along https://drive.google.com/file/d/1inJo_LvHCaT82DOrOBX3YUCdeV2egHLf/view?usp=sharing https://drive.google.com/file/d/1inJo_LvHCaT82DOrOBX3YUCdeV2egHLf/view?usp=sharing
NPR Sponsor Lines https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/10GjJqThTTg985IQ8BRPCxCZymjsUduZ9?usp=sharing