Health experts praise Beat The Scrum

Health experts praise Beat The Scrum

5th February 2018

Widnes Vikings were delighted to welcome Roy Lilley and Terri Porrett, two of the UK’s leading health sector experts, to their Betfred Super League opener against Catalans Dragons.

The pair, who oversee the Academy of Fab NHS stuff, an online hub containing some of the best innovations in the health sector, attended the fixture to find out more about the ground-breaking Beat The Scrum campaigns. They were welcomed to the game by Dave Sweeney, Implementation Lead for NHS Health and Care Partnerships in Cheshire and Merseyside, Mel Pickup – CEO of Warrington and Halton NHS Foundation Trust, and James Rule, CEO of Widnes Vikings.

Beat The Scrum sees legends of Rugby League and stars of Widnes Vikings unite to raise awareness of how people can lead healthier lifestyles and make the right choices when accessing NHS services. Through providing an innovative mix of digital promotion, PR campaigns, stadium advertising, as well as appearing on the front of the Vikings 2018 playing shirts, it makes a major contribution towards efforts to reduce the pressures faced by NHS services. It has been commissioned by the Mid-Mersey A&E Delivery Board.

In June 2017, Widnes Vikings delivered the first Beat The Scrum campaign, in partnership with Halton CCG. With more than 100,000 online video views, extensive regional and national media coverage, and a measurable impact on reducing pressure on local A&E services, it was an unprecedented success. The Vikings recieved the prestigious Rosa Parks Award from the Academy of Fab NHS stuff for the programme, as well as the Digital Campaign of the Year and Integrated Campaign of the Year accolades at the Chartered Institute Of Marketing Northern Awards.

This project has recently been followed up with a winter health campaign, which has been backed by some of the biggest names in Rugby League, including Warrington Wolves legends Mike Nicholas and Paul Cullen, St Helens greats Ray French and Phil Vievers, and Widnes’ own, Jim Mills.

Speaking at the fixture, Roy Lilley said: “Beat The Scrum is the most effective public health campaign in years; tough issues taken on by tough people, hard messages for a tough problem, and at the heart of it all people who care. Thank you for what you’ve achieved and the example you’ve shown us all.”

James Rule, CEO of Widnes Vikings, says: “It was an honour for us to welcome Roy and Terri to the Vikings. To hear two of the most informed and respected people in the world of health praise Beat The Scrum as being a ground-breaking and effective programme was humbling. We would like to thank our partners at the Mid-Mersey A&E Delivery Board for backing the programme and look forward to building on the success of these campaigns in the season ahead.”

Dave Sweeney says: “Beat The Scrum is a unique initiative that has real creativity in how it expresses some of the most important NHS messages. Having been awarded the prestigious Rosa Parks Award, we were delighted to welcome Roy and Terri to Halton, so they could find out more about the campaigns and see up close the incredible backing they’ve had from the local community.”

Health experts praise Beat The Scrum