Almirall sheds light on the mental effects of psoriasis

Not only does psoriasis take a huge physical toll, often undiscussed are the mental effects the skin disease has in people’s lives. Almirall hopes to change this with its "Shedding Light on Psoriasis" campaign that launched Oct. 29 for World Psoriasis Day.

This is the second year Almirall has worked in conjunction with the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA) on the campaign to focus on not only the physical but also the mental effects of the disease.

Approximately 60 million people globally suffer from psoriasis, and studies show more than a quarter of those with the disease suffer from depression, with 1 in 10 of those people being diagnosed with clinical depression. Further, 48% of those with the disease exhibit signs of anxiety.

The video aspect of the campaign is told in both English and Spanish (the campaign is also a collaboration with Acción Psoriasis, the Spanish association of psoriasis) and features Joel Nelson (English) and Karina Chávez (Spanish), both IFPA ambassadors sharing their personal experiences with psoriasis and how talking about their feelings and struggles with psoriasis brought them from out of the darkness into the light.

This last part is emphasized by illustrator Beatriz Ramo’s paintings of the two discussing the evolution of their experience, first with isolation and depression, shown in blue grays and defeated postures, then, full color and joyously embracing their lives.

“When we told Beatriz Ramo about the project, she was engaged from the very beginning with Joel and Karina IFPA Ambassadors, illustrating their stories first hand,” David Lupiáñez, Almirall’s global director for psoriasis and strategy execution, said in an email interview. “She created a portrait of two people who live with psoriasis by painting their journey, and the struggles and achievements they have made throughout their lives.”

In addition to Ramo's portraits, Almirall created a huge cube with the illustrations along with the testimonials that was on show at Almirall's headquarters.

All the contents of the campaign, including educational pieces, can be found at the main website. Media include the pharma’s social channels such as LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube.

Lupiáñez says the campaign was covered by conventional media and hit more than 4.7 million impacts.

“The key message that we hope people come away with when they see our campaign is that Psoriasis is much more than a skin condition. Sharing information unknown to most of the population about the dark side of psoriasis and its impact on well-being through traditional media such as the press and social media, which always allows for more direct interaction with users,” Lupiáñez said.

In late February of last year, Almirall acquired exclusive rights in Europe to commercialize Wynzora for the treatment of plaque psoriasis from MC2 Therapeutics. MC2 was granted FDA approval for the topical cream in 2020.

Almirall's focus on psoriasis also includes Ilumetri, an IL-23 inhibitor licensed from Sun Pharmaceutical, and the immunomodulator Skilarence.