Ross Mathews, Dr. Rachael Ross and Other Leading Community Voices Join OraSure to Promote Sexual Health and HIV Testing
BETHLEHEM, Pa., Sept. 30, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- OraSure Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq:OSUR), makers of the OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test, announced today the launch of its newly revamped targeted nationwide awareness campaign to encourage open and honest dialogue about sexual health and the importance of learning your HIV status.
The "Life. As we know it." campaign takes a bold new strategic approach to reaching consumers most at risk for HIV through the creation and sharing of relevant content designed to engage consumers in a discussion about topics related to love, sex, relationships and sexual health.
Initially, the campaign will reach out to two groups among those at highest risk for HIV – gay men and African American women. OraSure has teamed up with powerful and influential voices to reach consumers in these communities through testimonials, interactive panel discussions, sharable discussion guides and informative videos. The campaign will also use leading media properties to communicate with these communities, including LOGO TV and its online properties for the gay community – a network that reaches into over 52 million homes – and Essence, the top-rated media brand for African American women.
"HIV testing is a challenging subject to address head on with consumers. After a careful analysis of available channels to gain mindshare of our target markets, we've determined that the most effective way to approach the topic is through a broader conversation on relationships, dating and sex, and through the engagement of passionate, trusted community influencers to help us introduce product," said Kathleen Weber, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Consumer Products at OraSure Technologies.
The campaign will also feature engagement in high profile consumer events, as well as targeted broadcast, outdoor, digital and print advertising through the first half of 2014.
Television host and best-selling author Ross Mathews has teamed with OraSure to kick off the campaign to the gay community which launched on September 27th, in conjunction with National Gay Men's HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.
Mathews debuted on television as a correspondent for "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" in 2001. Mathews then became a regular panelist and occasional guest host on E!'s talk show "Chelsea Lately," and remains a ﬁxture on E! News and E! Network's live red carpet awards show coverage. Mathews recently added best-selling author to his resume with his ﬁrst book, Man Up: Tales of My Delusional Self-Conﬁdence, released in May. He currently stars in and produces his own weekly talk show, "Hello Ross!" for E!. "Hello Ross!" is the new weekly fan destination where the intersections of celebrity gossip and pop culture collide, hosted by the world's biggest super fan himself, Mathews.
He will be joined throughout the campaign by influential members of the gay community to talk about topics such as sex, love, health and the importance of testing for HIV. OraSure is also proud to be a sponsor of RuPaul's Drag Race – the most watched series on LOGO TV. Working with LOGO, the Company is also developing custom co-branded content that will air on the network. The campaign will also have a very active and visible presence on the ground at Gay Pride events being held in eight major U.S. cities over the next year. Additionally, the campaign will reach gay men in the top 15 markets via out of home advertising (billboards, bus shelters and posters) placed in key neighborhoods such as West Hollywood, South Beach, Miami and the Castro in San Francisco and print advertising in over 40 gay-targeted publications.
To engage the African American community, the "Life. As we know it." campaign will feature a dynamic, timely, new web series that will entertain, inform and engage today's modern African American woman with candid, real talk about life, love and sex. The inviting and uplifting interactive panel conversations will be structured like a talk show and will be hosted by an esteemed trio of celebrity panelists from the community including physician, sex expert and co-host of nationally-syndicated television show The Doctors Dr. Rachael Ross, author, life coach and relationship expert Demetria L. Lucas and national television/radio personality and veteran journalist Jacque Reid.
Dr. Rachael Ross, a family doctor and sexologist, is a forerunner of groundbreaking discussions surrounding relationships, sex, health, abstinence & comprehensive sex education for teenagers, and most importantly HIV/AIDS prevention. Dr. Rachael tours college campuses to speak, is frequently quoted in Cosmopolitan and Self Magazine, contributes to several medical publications, is often a featured guest on the nationally syndicated Tom Joyner Morning Show, and just became a co-host on the nationally syndicated television show, The Doctors.
Demetria L. Lucas, the author of "A Belle in Brooklyn: The Go-to Girl for Advice on Living Your Best Single Life (Atria)", is the creator of the award-winning personal blog ABelleInBrooklyn.com and the founder of Coached By Belle, a boutique life-coaching service. Lucas, chosen as one of Essence.com's "40 Fierce & Fab Under 40", is also a contributing editor for The Root, and is a contributing writer for the websites of The Grio, XO Jane, Essence, Clutch, Vibe Vixen and Uptown.
Jacque Reid, a veteran journalist with a background in entertainment and news, has interviewed some of the world's most influential and interesting people. Currently, Jacque serves as a daily co-host on NBC's celebrity and lifestyle show, New York Live and is a regular part of the nationally syndicated radio program, The Tom Joyner Morning Show. Reid reports on women and women's issues on her Inside Her Story segments.
The conversations, which will be hosted in conjunction with major events throughout the country, will focus on life, relationships, sexual health and the importance of testing for HIV. Video captured from these conversations, will be featured as a web series on Essence.com and also be housed on a dedicated campaign website.
The web series will kick off with a panel events taking place in October – October 4th at the Blogalicious conference in Atlanta, October 20th at the Circle of Sisters Expo in New York City, and October 22nd at the 2013 Spelman College and Morehouse College Homecoming in Atlanta. More information will be posted on October 4th to the campaign website at www.whatsworthknowing.com/women.
The fall schedule of activity will culminate with a panel event and media day, featuring Magic "Earvin" Johnson on November 19th in New York City in recognition of World AIDS Day which is held annually on December 1st.
"Through the use of our OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test, we believe more than 200,000 individuals now know their HIV status," said Douglas A. Michels, President and Chief Executive Officer of OraSure Technologies. "The more we can find ways to start conversations about HIV testing, especially among the communities most impacted by HIV, the better the chance there is to stop the spread of HIV."
The OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test is the first ever in-home rapid HIV test made available directly to consumers. It detects antibodies to both HIV-1 and HIV-2 with an oral swab, providing a safe, effective and confidential in-home testing option with results in as little as 20 minutes. It is available in most national drugstore and mass merchandiser retail outlets nationwide and online at CVS/CVS.com, Rite Aid/RiteAid.com, Walgreens/Walgreens.com, Walmart/Walmart.com, and on Drugstore.com and OraQuick.com. The OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test is an over-the-counter version of OraQuick ADVANCE®, an oral swab rapid test with more than 25 million units sold in the professional market, and the same test that doctors and healthcare professionals have relied on and used for 10 years.
To ensure optimal support for individuals using the OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test, OraSure offers live support and comprehensive referral services 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year, through a toll-free support center and consumer website at www.oraquick.com. The OraQuick® Support Center is staffed with bi-lingual (English/Spanish) representatives who are available by telephone at 866-436-6527 to answer questions about HIV/AIDS and using and interpreting the test. They also provide referrals to follow-up and care, and can take orders for the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test. Additionally, the product website provides access to resources and referral to follow-up counseling, confirmatory testing and medical care.
For more information on OraQuick visit OraQuick.com.
About OraSure Technologies
OraSure Technologies is a leader in the development, manufacture and distribution of oral fluid diagnostic and collection devices and other technologies designed to detect or diagnose critical medical conditions. Its innovative products include rapid tests for the detection of antibodies to HIV and HCV at the point of care and testing solutions for detecting various drugs of abuse. In July 2012, the Company received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the Company's OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test for sale directly to consumers in the over-the-counter (OTC) market - making it the first and only rapid OTC HIV test approved in the U.S. In addition, the Company is a leading provider of oral fluid sample collection, stabilization and preparation products for molecular diagnostic applications. OraSure's portfolio of products is sold globally to various clinical laboratories, hospitals, clinics, community-based organizations and other public health organizations, research and academic institutions, distributors, government agencies, physicians' offices, and commercial and industrial entities. The Company's products enable healthcare providers to deliver critical information to patients, empowering them to make decisions to improve and protect their health.
For more information on OraSure Technologies, please visit www.orasure.com.
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