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#BCNeedsPAs Marketing Campaign: Canadian Association of Physician Assistants


Physician assistants (PAs) are key members of many health care teams across Canada. They help drive efficiencies and improve patient access to quality care in family doctors’ offices, long-term care homes, emergency rooms, surgical suites and cancer centres. At the time of this campaign, most provinces in Canada, as well as the Canadian Armed Forces, supported the use of PAs — but not British Columbia.

To advocate for the value of PAs in B.C.’s health care system, the Canadian Association of Physician Assistants (CAPA) engaged Santis Health to raise public awareness with a province-wide digital and Out-of-Home campaign. This campaign featured several key placements in Vancouver, Victoria and other key communities across the province, with the goal of putting pressure on the B.C. government to support the use of PAs in their health care system.

What Santis Did

To support this project, Santis led the following marketing deliverables:

  • Identified key locations across the province to target government officials, MLAs, health system leaders and other key stakeholders while also informing public perception of the role PAs play. Media buys were planned across rural areas such as Comox, Prince George and Kamloops, to the larger population centres of Vancouver and Victoria, as well as key transit points in Kelowna and the Greater Vancouver area.
  • Developed campaign creative and copy to raise awareness about the value of PAs and the vital role they could play in B.C.’s health care system. Messaging targeted access to primary care in B.C., Canada’s recent uptake in PAs in other provinces as well as education about what PAs can do.
  • Launched an omni channel campaign, including online ads, digital Out-of-Home (Billboards) and social media ad placements within the province. Santis also optimized CAPA’s website and accompanying landing page to deliver a clear call to action and key messages connected to the campaign.


The campaign rain for three months, reaching over 1,560,000 British Columbians across digital and social media placements, plus hundreds of thousands more impressions projected from the Out-of-Home billboards across the province. The #BCNeedsPAs landing page received over 6,300 views and CAPA gained over 6,100 social media engagements.

Shortly after the conclusion of this campaign, the Government of British Columbia announced the Ministry of Health was collaborating with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia to introduce physician assistants into B.C.’s emergency departments, a critical first step to help overburdened doctors and nurses better manage patient needs.

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