The Challenge

TerryWhite Chemmart, one of Australia’s leading community pharmacy networks, engaged Havas Red to develop an impactful PR program to position the pharmacy network as a vaccination leader, and the first to market provider for influenza vaccinations.

The Solution

The flu vaccination is a yearly calendar event, but this year, we really wanted  to garner attention, and drive action around people protecting themselves from what can be a serious respiratory disease for our community.

At the time, the impact of multiple viruses – influenza, COVID-19 and RSV – was dominating news headlines in the Northern Hemisphere, trends which often indicate what we’ll experience locally. At the same time, a growing GP crisis was placing pressure on an already over-stretched GP system.

Our strategy sought to leverage the landscape and GP crisis, positioning pharmacy vaccination as a solution to the current healthcare problem, by supporting GP’s in freeing up waiting rooms for those in more need of acute or specialist GP care.

For added authority, we leveraged a trusted voice on the topic and partnered with Dr Nick Coatsworth, the nation’s most respected infectious disease expert, who – together with TerryWhite Chemmart’s Chief Pharmacist – called for a “collaborative approach to care”, with doctors and pharmacists working together to deliver key health services during winter.

To drive added news value, we coined the early onset of flu season as a ‘triple virus threat’ (combining COVID-19 and RSV). We launched with a live on-air vaccination administration with Dr Nick Coatsworth and Chief pharmacist Brenton Hart on the TODAY show (earned not paid), followed by TV and radio interviews, and quality online features that included human interest stories regarding personal flu experience.

The Results

Total audience reach of 5.04 million
236 pieces of media coverage. Story continued to generate coverage for 51 days (and still being syndicated in 2024 flu season)
30% YoY increase in flu bookings
3% increase in market share of community pharmacy vaccination


  • PRIA Golden Target Awards – Media Relations, Bronze
  • Mumbrella CommsCon – Media Relations, Shortlist