2019-08-02 by EPR Staff

The state of North Dakota, acting through its North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH), Division of Disease Control (the STATE) is soliciting proposals for media development and a campaign media buy to increase pediatric influenza vaccination rates.


The vision of the North Dakota Department of Health (NDDoH), Division of Disease Control, Immunization Program is to ensure all North Dakotans are vaccinated and protected against vaccine preventable diseases. The mission of the NDDoH Immunization Program is to protect the health of North Dakotans by preventing and mitigating vaccine-preventable diseases through immunization, by managing immunization resources and immunization information systems, and by identifying and promoting evidence-based public health best practices.

Our agency is conducting this solicitation because:

                • Influenza (flu) is a contagious viral infection that affects the respiratory system. Children are especially vulnerable to becoming sick with flu because of exposures in classrooms or childcare settings.

                • Children ages 6 months up to their 5th birthday – even those who are healthy – are at high risk of developing serious flu complications simply because of their age.

                • Children ages 6 months through 18 years with certain long-term health problems, such as asthma, diabetes, or neurological and neurodevelopmental conditions, also are at high-risk for complications from flu.

                • 122 pediatric influenza deaths in the United States have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as of July 9, 2019 for the 2018 – 2019 flu season. But the number of actual flu deaths in children is thought to be higher than that because not all cases of flu are detected.

                • To get what CDC believes is a more accurate number of actual flu-related deaths, CDC uses statistical modeling to estimate the burden of flu. Using a peer-reviewed mathematical model, CDC estimates that since 2010, influenza has resulted in between 2.9 million – 12 million illnesses, between 12,000 and 48,000 hospitalizations, and between 37 (reported) and 1,200      deaths annually among children (people younger than 18 years of age).

                • Among reported pediatric deaths since 2004, about 80 percent of the deaths occurred among children who were not fully vaccinated against flu. Since the 2010-2011 flu season, between 40 percent and 60 percent of pediatric deaths occurred in children who were otherwise healthy,            underscoring the fact that even healthy kids can get sick and die from flu.

                • The single best way to protect children against seasonal flu, and its potentially severe consequences, is to get them a flu vaccine each year.

                • Influenza vaccination rates amongst North Dakota children for the 2017-2018 flu season were only 62.4percent.

                • Flu vaccination reduces flu illnesses, doctor’s visits, and missed work and school, but perhaps more importantly, a growing body of evidence supports the fact that vaccination also reduces the risk of serious flu outcomes that can result in hospitalization and even death. A 2014 study in the Journal of Infectious Disease showed that flu vaccine reduced children’s risk of flu-related pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) admission by 74 percent during flu seasons from 2010-2012. More recently, a 2017 study in the journal Pediatrics showed that flu vaccination significantly reduced a child’s risk of dying from influenza. This study considered data from four flu seasons between 2010 and 2014, and found that flu vaccination reduced the likelihood of flu-associated death by half (51 percent) among children with underlying high-risk medical conditions. Flu vaccination also reduced the likelihood of flu-associated death by nearly two-thirds (65 percent) among healthy children.

                • CDC recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older get an annual seasonal flu vaccine.

                • According to the North Dakota Immunization Information System, influenza immunization rates amongst American Indian children are lower than rates for other North Dakota children. Vaccination against influenza is especially important for American Indians and Alaska Natives,    who are at higher risk for complications from the flu. Compared to the general U.S. population, American Indians and Alaska Natives are more likely to be hospitalized from the flu than the general U.S. population. Experts aren’t sure exactly why, but reasons that these populations are at high risk of flu complications could include social and economic factors that often result in reduced access to health care and crowded living conditions.2

                • There are many common misconceptions about influenza vaccine:

Scope of Work:

The NDDoH, Division of Disease Control is soliciting proposals for the development of two public service announcements (PSAs) to inform North Dakotans of the importance of pediatric influenza vaccination and a media buy to promote pediatric influenza vaccination. The goal of this project is to increase pediatric influenza vaccination for not only the 2019 – 2020 influenza season, but also for upcoming years.

Production costs for newly created PSAs about pediatric influenza vaccination should be included in the cost for this proposal. The target audience is parents of North Dakota children. PSAs should be inclusive of diverse populations. Proposals should include a description of how diverse populations will be included in the target audience. The NDDoH will work with the contractor to develop the PSA and will approve the PSA prior to airing. PSAs must be made available to the NDDoH for websites and airing in the future. The NDDoH looks forward to effective and creative ideas to promote pediatric influenza vaccination.

Offerors must submit proposals with the justification that include social media and/or online advertising of the PSAs. Please provide a rationale and justification for the use of this type of promotion. If offerors have other effective promotional ideas (billboards, bathroom signs, gas station pumps, etc.), those should also be outlined in the proposal with a justification.

If radio is proposed, paid spots will be aired between the hours of 6:00 A.M. and 10:00 P.M.; free spots may be played at any hour. The paid spots should be divided between AM and FM radio stations at the discretion of the contractor to maintain the continuity in reaching the target audience. Inclusion of Tribal radio is requested, if radio is proposed. Please provide justification as to why radio is being proposed.

If television is proposed, television campaign paid spots will be aired between the hours of 6:00 A.M. and 10:00 P.M. and free spots may be played at any hour. Please provide justification as to why television is being proposed.


The contractor will be required to provide the following to achieve the objective of this project:

                1. Two different public service announcements (PSAs) promoting pediatric influenza vaccination to North Dakota parents. PSAs should be in various formats and be able to be used for television, radio and social media/online. PSAs in various formats must be made available to the NDDoH to be used at a later date.

                2. Strategic media buy to reach parents of North Dakota children. Media must occur between October 1, 2019, and April 30, 2020. The majority of media should occur between October 1, 2019, and December 31, 2019. Proposals should include social media and/or online advertising    (Facebook, Snapchat, YouTube, Pandora, etc.) and may also include online newspapers. Other creative promotional media is highly encouraged.

                3. Quarterly invoices outlining costs and activities must be submitted.

                4. The contract will require a post-analysis report outlining initially proposed spots, compared to spots bought, compared to spots aired. A breakdown of actual dollars spent for production of the PSA and each schedule (television, radio, social media) broken down by week will be included in the post-analysis report.


                No on-site work is required.


                The STATE will provide technical assistance in the development of public service announcements. The STATE will approve the concept of the PSAs prior to shooting and will approve the final PSAs prior to airing.

                The STATE will provide the following personnel to support the project:

                                • Molly Howell, Immunization Program Manager: Review of proposals, contracting, final approval of PSA concept, final approval of PSAs

                                • Nicole Peske, Chief Communications Officer: final approval of PSA content, final approval of PSAs

                                • Abbi Berg, Vaccines For Children/Quality Improvement Manager: Review of proposals, technical assistance

                                • Jenny Galbraith, surveillance coordinator: Review of proposals, technical assistance

                                • Michelle Dethloff, Epidemiology and Laboratory Capacity manager: Review of  proposals, technical assistance

                                • Levi Schlosser, Influenza coordinator: Review of proposals, technical assistance


                The contractor will take appropriate measures to ensure the safety of its employees, state employees, the public, and property. The contractor must identify any potential risks, issues and problems associated with the project and identify ways to mitigate those potential risks.


                The contractor will be expected to use appropriate project management to ensure the work is accomplished on time, within budget, and meets quantity and quality standards.

                                1. The contractor will be required to collaborate with the STATE to agree upon the contract schedule, including a work breakdown, schedule of tasks and activities, and progress milestones.

                                2. The contractor will be required to coordinate with the STATE to develop a communication plan. Any problems or unforeseen events must be communicated timely to the STATE project manager, and any changes must be agreed upon between the parties and set forth in a written amendment to the contract. If the STATE requires corrective action, the contractor will be notified in writing.

Due Date:

August 12th, 2019. 


Agencies worth considering include W2O Group and Zeno Group.