DaVita, Alonzo Mourning, George Lopez Team Up To Raise Kidney Disease Awareness In Public Service Announcement

DaVita®, a division of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. (NYSE: DVA) and a leading provider of kidney care services, today announced the launch of a national television public service announcement (PSA) to raise awareness on the risks of kidney disease. March marks National Kidney Month, and March 14 is World Kidney Day.

The announcement features seven-time NBA All-star Alonzo Mourning and actor and comedian George Lopez, both kidney transplant recipients.

“The fact is, one in 10 adults* in the U.S. has kidney disease,” says Lopez in the announcement. “And it often has no symptoms, so know your risk.”

The leading causes of kidney disease are diabetes and hypertension. African-Americans are also four times more likely to suffer from chronic kidney disease than their white counterparts, and Hispanics are twice as likely. The risks for minorities are especially great, Mourning notes in the PSA.

“A simple blood test may save your kidneys,” Mourning concludes.

A risk assessment quiz is available online at www.davita.com/kidneyaware. The site also encourages those with risk factors to take a pledge to get tested and to send electronic cards to friends and family to encourage them to take the risk assessment.

“At DaVita, we see the challenges of kidney failure every day in our patients’ lives,” said Kent Thiry, co-chairman and CEO of DaVita HealthCare Partners. “This announcement is designed to get everyone thinking about kidney disease, learning their risks, and then – if they are at risk – getting a simple blood test to screen for kidney disease.”

DaVita will also be launching a Denver-area kidney disease awareness campaign to help make its headquarters city the most kidney aware city in the U.S. The campaign will include daytime and primetime airings of the national PSA as well as transit advertising and a variety of public events throughout the year.

The PSA can be viewed at: http://youtu.be/lUpXhb_omz8.

Additionally, DaVita aims to raise awareness for kidney disease through social media during National Kidney Month. DaVita will be hosting online events during March and encourages people to follow along:

Tweet chat: On Thursday, March 14, DaVita will host a kidney disease awareness  Tweet Chat in honor of World Kidney Day starting at 3 p.m. EST/12 p.m. PST. Join the kidney community to discuss how to spread kidney disease awareness. We’ll be asking you to share how you’re spreading awareness in your neighborhood, at work and with your loved ones. You can participate by logging on to Twitter and following the hashtag  #kidneyaware.

Google + Hangout: On Friday, March 22,  DaVita will host a discussion about eating right for kidney health in honor of National Kidney Month and National Nutrition Month starting at 1 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PST. We will discuss the importance of eating a kidney-friendly diet, covering topics ranging from healthy food choices for those with kidney disease to how to maintain a kidney-friendly diet while traveling. Panelists are DaVita dietitian  Sara Colman, RD, CSR, CDE; low-sodium food blogger Jessica Goldman Foung, a.k.a.  Sodium Girl; and DaVita Chief Medical Officer  Dr. Allen R. Nissenson. The online location for the Google + Hangout is http://bit.ly/KidneyAwareHangout

Follow DaVita on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ and use the hashtag “#kidneyaware” to spread kidney disease awareness.

Following their experiences with kidney disease and kidney failure, both Mourning and Lopez formed foundations to improve and save the lives of thousands of people confronting the challenges of chronic kidney conditions and kidney failure. Learn more about their foundations at www.georgelopez.com and www.amcharities.org.

Transcript of DaVita’s :30 PSA Featuring Alonzo Mourning and George Lopez

George Lopez:
  What does a comedian have in common with a seven-time NBA all-star champion?
 

Alonzo Mourning:
Nothing (laughs).
 

George Lopez:
Well, besides a winning hook shot, Alonzo, it’s that both of us have had kidney disease, and had kidney failure.
 

Alonzo Mourning:
And after receiving a kidney transplant, now we’re both healthy and doing great.
 

George Lopez:
The fact is, one in 10 adults* in the U.S. has kidney disease. And it often has no symptoms, so know your risk.
 

Alonzo Mourning:
And that’s especially true for minorities. A simple blood test may save your kidneys.
 

George Lopez:
Know your risks; get tested; stay off dialysis; and learn more at DaVita.org.
 

*U.S. adults age 20 and over.

DaVita and DaVita HealthCare Partners are trademarks or registered trademarks of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

About DaVita

DaVita is the dialysis division of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc., a Fortune 500® company that, through its operating divisions, provides a variety of health care services to patient populations throughout the United States and abroad. A leading provider of kidney care in the United States, DaVita delivers dialysis services to patients with chronic kidney failure and end stage renal disease. DaVita strives to improve patients’ quality of life by innovating clinical care, and by offering integrated treatment plans, personalized care teams and convenient health-management services. As of December 31, 2012, DaVita operated or provided administrative services at 1,954 outpatient dialysis centers located in the United States serving approximately 153,000 patients. The company also operated 36 outpatient dialysis centers located in eight countries outside the United States. DaVita supports numerous programs dedicated to creating positive, sustainable change in communities around the world. The company’s leadership development initiatives and social responsibility efforts have been recognized by Fortune, Modern Healthcare, Newsweek and WorldBlu. For more information, please visit DaVita.com.

Copyright Business Wire 2010

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