Zach Braff & Donald Faison Kick-off Rock the Vote’s Health Care Campaign

Today Rock the Vote is kicking off a robust multimedia health care campaign to educate young people about their stake in the health care debate and encouraging them to participate.

The campaign launches with a 30 second television spot featuring Scrubs stars Zach Braff and Donald Faison encouraging young Americans to show they care and “demand health care now” by visiting or texting the keyword “HEALTH” to RTVOTE (788683). The ad uses the actors’ roles as “fake doctors” to educate young people about health care reform and demand that “the suits in Washington cover more than just their own asses.”

Braff and Faison’s PSA reinforces to young Americans’ that they have the most to gain – or lose – in health care reform. Americans between the ages of 19 and 29 have the highest uninsured rate of any age group. Nearly 1 in 3 is uninsured. In addition, half of uninsured 19- to 29-year olds work full time, but aren’t covered through their jobs and can’t afford health care because of low wages.

“I have always been lucky enough to have health insurance. But I have many friends who are not so lucky. If a medical crisis arose in their life, they would lose their entire savings. It is my belief that healthcare is a right, not a privilege. My hope is that our lawmakers and politicians will continue to work towards ensuring that every American, no matter how rich or poor, has access to affordable healthcare.” said Zach Braff.

“It’s important that Washington listens to young Americans now and not just when they need their votes,” said Donald Faison.

According to a recent Survey USA poll, 91% of young people ages 18-34 are paying attention to the health care debate and are most supportive of the public option (overall 58% of American say it is “extremely important,” but among 18 to 24 year olds that jumps to 68 percent and 65 percent for 25 to 29 year olds).

“Young Americans are living and breathing the health care issue, most of them hoping every day that they will not suffer an accident or illness that will put them in deep debt for years to come,” said Heather Smith, President, Rock the Vote.  “Twenty two million young Americans voted in the 2008 election, and they will continue to vote for those that represent their interests.”

In addition to the television ad, Rock the Vote is will release additional online videos to educate, entertain and provide ways for young people to speak out and take action. includes information about the key issues of health care costs, affordability and coverage and provides updates on the latest news articles and current status of the bill through a “Vitals” section of the site ( Visitors can also take action by signing the “Yes We Care” pledge demanding health care reform, emailing their local officials, and by showing their support through purchasing one of the exclusive health care t-shirts designed by Andrew W.K., Perez Hilton and RTV’s design contest winner.

The 30 second broadcast spot, as well as the online viral videos and select campaign elements were developed by the agency Citizen Group, San Francisco ( Agency creatives Steve Fong and Robin Raj wrote and directed the spots.  Through the support Health Care for American Now (HCAN) the spot will air on MTV, BET and Comedy Central beginning September 9, 2009 and run for approximately two weeks.

The ads can be viewed at

Editor’s Notes: 

Additional killer statistics on young people and health care can be found here: 

18-29 Year Olds: Highest Rate of Uninsured in the U.S.

Rock the Vote Health Care Action Center: 

About Rock the Vote: Rock the Vote’s mission is to engage and build the political power of young people in order to achieve progressive change in our country.  Rock the Vote uses music, popular culture and new technologies to engage and incite young people to register and vote in every election. And we give young people the tools to identify, learn about, and take action on the issues that affect their lives, and leverage their power in the political process.  Rock the Vote is creative, effective, and controlled by nobody’s agenda but our own – we tell it like it is and pride ourselves on being a trusted source for information on politics.  We empower the 45 million young people in America who want to step up, claim their voice in the political process, and change the way politics is done.    

About Citizen Group: Citizen Group is dedicated to building “citizen brands” by creating campaigns that work across media to inspire community engagement and action. In addition to Rock the Vote, the agency’s clients include Amnesty International, Cisco WebEx, Falcon Waterfree Technologies, Mighty Leaf Tea, NRDC, Pabst Brewing Company, San Francisco School Alliance, United Way, and WWF Climate Savers. 

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