Press release:

OAKLAND, Calif. — (October 22, 2013) – As health care coverage is becoming a reality for millions of previously uninsured Americans through health care reform, Kaiser Permanente is enlisting two famed NBA point guards to inspire young adults to prioritize their health by leading active lifestyles and securing the coverage they need.

Twenty-seven percent of the young adult population (ages 19 to 24) is uninsured, yet young Americans are least familiar with the new options in the Affordable Care Act. According to a Gallup Poll leading up to the opening of new health insurance exchanges, more than 36 percent of young adults say they are “not too” or “not at all” familiar with the new health law, compared with 28 percent of Americans ages 35 to 54, and 26 percent of those ages 55 and older.

“With health care reform, uninsured Americans can soon access quality health care through the front door of the health care system, which includes prevention and access to the knowledge and tools to live longer, healthier lives, which is one of the benefits of the Affordable Care Act,” said Bernard J. Tyson, CEO, Kaiser Permanente. “Young adults have the power to take ownership of their lives now—and a critical first step is to take care of their health. We are thrilled to partner with two respected and popular athletes to spread the word about the importance of striving for and maintaining good health.”

The Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul and the Golden State Warriors’ Stephen Curry are partnering with Kaiser Permanente to launch the “Own Now” platform to spread the message to young adults that they need to own their health and make healthier and more informed decisions.

“We’re not health experts, but we do know that people of all ages have to take care of their health,” noted Paul. “We’ve seen firsthand what injuries can do on the court and we all know that accidents and illnesses can happen to people at any time. Seizing the moment and living a full life is made easier when you take care of your health.”

Kaiser Permanente believes in Total Health, ensuring people can get and stay healthy in the places where they live, work, study and play. In addition, the organization provides access to great health care providers, conveniently located facilities, and easy ways for members to stay connected with their caregivers via secure email, mobile apps and telemedicine. Kaiser Permanente’s 200,000 employees and physicians are dedicated to making lives better through health promotion, wellness, disease prevention and providing excellent care to improve the health of members and the community at large.

In partnership with the athletes, Kaiser Permanente will participate in the health care conversation with young consumers. The “Own Now” platform will include activities to inspire young adults to examine how they can get the most out of now (#OwnNow), live healthier lives and get covered. As Total Health Ambassadors, the athletes will engage with young adults via social media, community events and in other popular venues.

“Whether in sports or in many of life’s endeavors, staying healthy and being prepared will lead to positive outcomes,” said Gregory A. Adams, Kaiser Permanente executive vice president and Northern California regional president. “By teaming up with Chris and Stephen, we hope to help promote a better understanding of health care reform and what getting the right coverage can mean in the journey toward health for young people and their families.”

“Emergencies are not the only time health coverage is important,” said Curry. “Coverage is important for your overall health and well-being. It is difficult to get the most out of life if you’re unprepared when something goes wrong.”

Paul and Curry joined Kaiser Permanente executives, young adults and other guests at a media event at L.A. LIVE in downtown Los Angeles on Oct. 21, where the partnership was announced and #OwnNow was launched.

The #OwnNow program continues what has been a busy offseason for Curry, who has — amongst other endeavors — made the switch from Nike to Under Armour, appeared in a commercial for Foot Locker with Houston Rockets guard James Harden and taking a trip to Tanzania for the Nothing But Nets campaign. The fifth-year guard from Davidson has seen his star rise since the Warriors’ impressive playoff run last season, and amongst his off-the-court tasks he’s been well chronicled on numerous national outlets.

Whether his stardom (and subsequent play) rise him to an NBA All-Star this season is unknown, but we do know he has become a major force within the NBA and sporting market. Most importantly, Curry has shown consistent dedication to helping out his community beyond what is asked of him. Kaiser Permanente’s #OwnNow program is just one more example of such dedication.