The Unexpendable Nine
The Unexpendable Nine
Hospitals, especially regional ones, and in-home caregivers found themselves in dire circumstances in mid-2019. They failed to reach a deal with insures about reimbursement for 2020 and an insufficient budget meant that care would have to be cutback, leading to beds being removed and the closing of entire wards. This project was designed to reverse the Health Ministry’s position and open new budget talks.
In mid-2019, hospitals and other healthcare providers could not agree with health insurers about financing for 2020, a first-time occurrence in the history of the Czech Republic.
According to hospital directors, doctors, nurses, patient organizations, and providers of in-home care, there was real danger of serious effects on patients in the form of limiting access to healthcare unless the state increased funding for 2020. The goal of the project was to force the Health Ministry and the cabinet to make the underfinancing of healthcare a top priority and to assure adequate budget growth for 2020.
The campaign was launched at a press conference where a gruesome POV video was played. It showed a patient’s view of trying to get first aid in a hospital. The patient is passing out because of a lack of personnel. The end of the video directs the viewer to the Crisis Staff’s website where the whole situation is described in detail. The video was distributed through PPC campaigns and public Facebook ads. At the same time, the Crisis Staff regularly presented the case and the specific problems of regional hospitals they visited to the media over the course of four weeks.
The video with a click-through to the 9pkz website had more than 1.6 million pageviews in just a month, more than 12,000 shares, and over 35,000 reactions. It attracted the attention of the media and the Health Ministry was forced to act. The problem was taken up by Prime Minister Andrej Babiš personally and a number of meetings were held with representatives of the Crisis Staff. The result was the ministry adding CZK 13 billion to its budget over its original proposal. In-home care received an extra CZK 1 billion.