The Department of Health is set to roll out a new scheme, The Information Standard, in a marketing and communications programme being delivered by The Team.
The Information Standard will operate as a certification scheme for health and socialcare information providers. Ann Robinson, consumer champion for the project, says, ‘There is a huge need for this sort of programme – there are more than 50 000 bodies in the UK offering health advice.’
She adds, ‘If you come out of the doctor’s with a bad diagnosis you will want information, and you will want to know that the information can be trusted. This is where the new standard will help.’
A range of organisations, including charities, private companies such as Bupa and public-sector groups such as NHS trusts, will be able to apply to use the scheme.
The Information Standard programme was set up by the DoH, and initially developed using the title Information Accreditation Scheme. It will be delivered by Capita, which won a tender for the work. The Team has been appointed to deliver the marketing and communication work as Capita’s preferred supplier, having worked with the organisation for about six years.
A logo for the scheme (pictured) was created earlier this year by Smith & Milton.
Organisations that want to use The Information Standard will be vetted by an assessment group, and the standard will relate to the organisation itself, rather then specifically to the information it is publicising.
Robinson says, ‘The great thing about this scheme is that it concentrates on processes, it’s properly assessed, and it’s kept up to date.’
The Information Standard is set to launch on 3 November at a ministerial event at the King’s Fund in London. Peter Mills, consulting director at The Team, says this event will aim to attract applicants to the standard. This will be followed next spring by a drive to promote the scheme to the general public.
Mills says The Team is working on a series of deliverables, including print products such as a general information pack, a website, a film and e-mail activity.
He adds, ‘We are looking at the campaign’s overall messaging – what the standard is and what it stands for.’ Mills says this campaign will be developed for the public-facing stage of the marketing activity next year, which will ‘probably involve a PR drive and a range of other deliverables including an enhanced website’.
Robinson adds, ‘The public launch will be a huge challenge, and the way in which the scheme is expressed will probably be different.’
THE INFORMATION STANDARD
- Set up by the Department of Health, it will be operated by independent group Capita to avoid any conflicts of interest
- The Team will deliver the marketing and communications strategy
- The marque was created by Smith & Milton