Hope For Depression Research Foundation Launches New PSA, Created By McCann HumanCare, At Fundraising Luncheon Honoring Mariel Hemingway & Demi Lovato

PSA by McCann HumanCare aims to increase the public's understanding of depression as a serious life-threatening illness and offers concrete ways for people to help loved ones who struggle with it

Nov 16, 2015, 10:00 ET from McCann Health

NEW YORK, Nov. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Depression is a serious, life-threatening illness. Unfortunately, many people construe depression as a temporary bad mood, and think that someone struggling with depression can "snap out" of it with a walk or a pep talk. Without proper information on how to talk to someone with depression, well-meaning people can unknowingly make harmful comments to people struggling with this potentially deadly illness.

To combat misunderstanding about this illness, the Hope for Depression Research Foundation (HDRF) debuted a new PSA at the HDRF Ninth Annual HOPE Luncheon Seminar honoring Academy-Award nominated actress and writer Mariel Hemingway, and the Caron Treatment Centers.  Multi-platinum selling recording artist and actress Demi Lovato will also be recognized as an "Ambassador of HOPE for a New Generation" for speaking out about her own struggle with bipolar disorder and substance use disorders. To watch the PSA click https://vimeo.com/144998580.

This HDRF campaign, created by McCann HumanCare, addresses the insensitivity endured by depression sufferers in a spot that features a bald cancer patient. People address her with the same shocking "get over yourself" comments that people with depression often hear. Their inappropriate comments are followed with a simple message:  "You wouldn't talk this way to someone with cancer. Don't talk this way to someone with depression. Depression is real. Serious. Life-threatening."

Audrey Gruss, HDRF Founder and Chair, created the organization in 2006 in memory of her mother Hope, who struggled with clinical depression. Gruss was very impressed when McCann HumanCare approached her about doing a PSA about depression.

"We're enormously proud and grateful that one of the leading ad agencies in the U.S. chose HDRF as its partner to create a TV spot that has the power to grab people and change attitudes.  McCann did their homework and recognized that we are the leading depression research organization in the field."

"It's a groundbreaking public awareness advertisement," she added.

Leo Tarkovsky, President, McCann HumanCare, said: "Despite much progress, mental health remains the last frontier of misunderstanding and trivialization of a serious illness that plagues millions on a daily basis. As experts in communicating about health and wellness, we, at McCann HumanCare, are no strangers to recognizing and confronting deeply ingrained biases that are associated with many chronic conditions. Our mission is to challenge and change this antiquated perception to enable society to embrace the cause of ensuring proper diagnosis, prevention and treatment of depression, the cause that the Hope for Depression Research Foundation so valiantly champions."

The campaign includes a 60-second TV spot and web video as well as a new landing page for the PSA program on the Hope for Depression Research Foundation website at  www.hopefordepression.org

About Hope for Depression Research Foundation (HDRF)

HDRF's mission is to fund the most innovative neuroscience research into the origins, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of depression and other mood disorders – bipolar disorder, postpartum depression, post-traumatic stress syndrome, anxiety disorder and suicide.

In 2010, HDRF launched its Depression Task Force (DTF) – an outstanding collaboration of eight leading scientists, at the frontiers of brain science, from different research institutions across the U.S. and Canada. These scientists have developed an unprecedented research strategy that integrates the most advanced knowledge in genetics, epigenetics, molecular biology, electrophysiology, and brain imaging. To accelerate breakthrough research, they share ongoing results, in real time, at the new HDRF Data Center. For more information, visit: www.hopefordepression.org

About McCann HumanCare

McCann HumanCare, a fully integrated consumer health and wellness agency, is part of McCann Health (www.mccannhealth.com), the most awarded professional and consumer health communications network with the largest international expertise spanning 20 countries and 60 offices. McCann Health consists of three global marketing communications networks: McCann Torre Lazur, McCann Healthcare (professional) and McCann HumanCare (consumer health & wellness). Specialty units include McCann Echo (professional), McCann Global Health (public health), McCann Pharmacy Initiative, McCann Managed Markets, McCann Complete Medical, and Double Helix (market access, medical communications, strategic consultancy & research). McCann Health is a part of McCann Worldgroup and the Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG).

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20151113/287244

SOURCE McCann Health