The Department of Health has appointed two media agencies to manage its public health awareness campaigns in a bid to “streamline” its approach to communications.

From 1 January, Freud Communications will manage PR for the DH’s public health campaigns, while MEC will manage media planning.

Among Freud’s other clients are global drinks company Diageo, fast food chain KFC, betting chain Ladbrokes and Pedigree Chum. MEC has done work for Bacardi, Barclays and Chanel.

The contracts follow a tender process and replace the DH’s previous approach of running single-issue campaigns supported by different agencies.

In a statement announcing the deals, the DH said: “The focus for public health marketing has now moved to a life course approach, through which a small number of trusted brands will deliver communications support on all topics that are relevant to a person at that stage.

“This integrated approach will deliver savings of around 25 per cent, in line with efforts to reduce spend on government communications.”

The two agencies will work on a public health social marketing strategy, focusing on four strands: Change4Life, Smokefree, Youth and Older people.

DH head of marketing Sheila Mitchell said: “Both MEC and Freud Communications will forego a percentage of their fee if they don’t meet the targets set in their plans.”