Havas Health & You launches Behind the Mask

Behind the Mask is a global research initiative to document health experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Havas Health & You (HH&Y) has launched the details of a long-term global research project, Behind the Mask, a longitudinal, multi-armed study that focuses on documenting the ongoing evolution of health and wellness. This sector has seen dynamic shifts in the past years that have only been accelerated by C19. The project was launched in May and contains both qualitative and quantitative arms, providing a direct and continuous window into the changing nature of the health industry, and exploring how medical care is delivered in the 21st century.

“We know that the health category has been changing at a rapid clip, and the global pandemic has acted as a major accelerant of some of those changes”, said Brian Robinson, Global Chief Strategy Officer at HH&Y. “The changes that were taking place prior to the pandemic were already posing unique challenges as well as creating great opportunity, not just to those who serve the health community, but to all members of society. It was important that we create a record of the experiences of this time to help guide our thinking in this complex, shifting environment.”

Taking a long-term approach to collecting these unique viewpoints becomes increasingly valuable as more data is collected. The first wave of surveys showed that 70% of clinicians described a resurgence of C19 as “almost inevitable”. When the next round of surveys was collected, this number jumped to 79%. When interviewees are revisited over time and their views are accompanied by quantitative accounts, the story gains clarity and it becomes increasingly possible to present key moments in time in modern health.

“We wanted to create an ongoing baseline of data from different stakeholders, and then triangulate those points of view,” said Andrew Gardner, Chief Strategy Officer at Havas Lynx Group in London. “We know that both doctors and patients find the current medical delivery system stressful, but they find different parts of it stressful. The pandemic has made us all think about how care is delivered, so it seemed like an excellent time to understand what seems to be working, and what isn’t, and to follow the people involved over time.”

The qualitative arm is being led by Brad Davidson, Director of Medical Anthropology across the HH&Y network. “People are incredibly busy right now, and many doctors were already working at near-task-overload levels prior to the pandemic. So, we’ve asked doctors and other participating HCPs to conduct an “auto-ethnography”, essentially recording their own observations from the inside. We’ve gotten some very powerful footage of doctors nearly asleep recording themselves at the end of a 12-hour shift, and their concerns and desire to be heard is palpable.”

The study is designed primarily with an aim to understand the right strategies to build stronger health and wellness brands in this new environment. This will equip HH&Y and their clients with the information needed to connect with their audiences, patients and providers, on a more human level, by painting a complete picture of care providers as people with their own ambitions, worldviews, and opinions.

The ongoing research can be found at http://behindthemask.health, with regular publications on future topics following the original subsets of studied individuals to be posted on an ongoing basis through the remainder of 2020 and plans to document these findings longer-term. You can subscribe to receive updates on the most current information available as the global situation unfolds.


About Havas Health & You

Havas Health & You unites Havas Life, Health4Brands (H4B), Havas Lynx Group, Havas Life PR, and Havas Health Plus, all wholly owned health and communications networks, with consumer health businesses and practices of Havas Creative Group. Its customer-centric approach has the talent, tenacity, and technology that health-and-wellness companies, brands, and people need to thrive in today’s world. For more information, go to www.HavasHealthandYou.com.

About Havas Lynx Group

Havas Lynx Group has grown from a small creative agency formed in the Northern Quarter of Manchester into a global healthcare communications agency, offering campaign development, brand strategy, capability building, and education services to the pharmaceutical industry.

Informed by experience and driven by innovation, the people of Havas Lynx Group are agents of the next era in health. Dedicated to helping clients connect consumers, professionals, and brands with information services, and influences to drive new relationships and better outcomes. Formerly Creative Lynx, Havas Lynx Group is a member of the Havas Health & You global network. For more information, go to www.havaslynx.com