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By Jennifer Faull, Deputy Editor

May 13, 2016 | 3 min read

Boots UK announced today (13 May) that it was embarking on “a new communications direction” which will see it roll out an ad campaign showing the different ways it helps to improve people’s health.

It comes on the back of a tasking few weeks for the brand after a Guardian investigation accused the brand of forcing staff to exploit an NHS scheme to boost profits. It was claimed that Boots had been directing chemists to provide check-ups known as medicine-use reviews (MUR) to customers (and staff members in a bid to boost numbers) who didn't need them in order to claim NHS money as well as pressuring pharmacists to carry out unnecessary health checks.

At the time Boots told The Drum that it didn’t recognise the claims which were “not representative of the 60,000 colleagues who work for Boots UK.”

However, the brand seems to now be on a PR offensive to remind customers of its history and what it brings to communities across the country. The campaign comprises a series of TV adverts showing a Boots member of staff offering help and advice to people.

Helen Jeremiah, director of customer strategy and communications for the retailer said the new direction aims to show how Boots puts the health and beauty needs of our customers and our communities right at the centre of what it does do “and demonstrates how our colleagues deliver the unique Boots UK specialisms that keep the nation healthy and happy".

“This is not just about advertising,” said Jeremiah. “What we are communicating is rooted in real business action and the important difference our colleagues can make in local communities. For example, we’ve created an eye-check storybook called Zookeeper Zoe which includes eye health checks within the story. We’re giving this away free to parents to help them spot any first signs of eye health problems in their children. Our opticians are also participating in a schools vision screening programme - so far 20 percent of children screened have been identified as having eyesight issues.”

Aside from the campaign the brand has also been working with YouTuber Chai Cameron to offer teens guidance on how to get healthier skin through an online portal. According to Jeremiah more in the pipeline in terms of the services it plans to offer.

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