Subaru launches U.S. Asian-targeted ‘Hep B Hero Mobile’ heatlh awareness campaign

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Subaru of America is joining the San Francisco Hep B Free campaign as the official vehicle and partner by donating the use of a 2010 Subaru Legacy detailed with full color artwork promoting the campaign theme which calls on everyone to “B a Hero” in preventing liver cancer and the hepatitis B disease.

Hepatitis B causes up to 80 percent of all liver cancers, and disproportionately affects 1 in 10 Asian and Pacific Islanders. A safe and effective vaccine prevents infection and liver cancer caused by hepatitis B. The most important step towards eliminating hepatitis B disease is by being tested for infection in your doctor’s office.

The new model 2010 Subaru Legacy Sedan is black with a cape design and features the “B” emblem of the campaign along with the Subaru logo. It will debut at the 2nd annual B a Hero Gala — a benefit fundraiser for SF Hep B Free, the citywide campaign to screen and vaccinate all Asian and Pacific Islanders for hepatitis B. The car will be on display in front of the Empress of China on Oct 15 from 5:30 to 9pm and will be featured in prominent Bay Area Asian American oriented events including the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival, Pistahan Parade and Festival and Autumn Moon Festival. The car will make its traveling road show debut on November 4 at the San Mateo Hep B Free launch.

“Subaru is committed to helping educate the community and increase awareness through the Hep B Free movement,” said Todd Lawrence, promotions and sponsorship manager, Subaru of America, Inc.  “The Asian American/Pacific Islander community is one of the most vibrant and fastest growing in America.  We are proud to be part of the community’s good health initiatives and continued development.”

HBV is the greatest health disparity between Asians and non-Asians. One in 10 Asians are chronically infected with Hep B and are four times more likely to die from liver cancer compared with the general population. 80 percent of liver cancer worldwide is caused by chronic HBV infection. Early detection of HBV will benefit the carrier as well as prevent the infection from spreading. Hepatitis B is not only vaccine preventable, but it also has effective treatments that can slow or prevent liver damage caused by the disease.

“The Asian community draws its heritage from some of the oldest cultures in the world.  Subaru is starting a new “legacy” with the donation of this Subaru Legacy and becoming the first car company to become a major player in the health and well-being of the growing Asian/Pacific Islander community,” said Ted Fang, AsianWeek Foundation Director and SF Hep B Free Steering Committee Member.

“Thanks to Subaru’s generosity, SF Hep B Free is delighted to have the hepatitis B awareness message displayed in such an innovative and fun manner,” said Janet Zola, Health Prevention Specialist with the SF Dept. of Public Health and SF Hep B Free Steering Committee Member. “We are on the right path to eliminating the transmission of this very serious disease as we encourage everyone to be screened and vaccinated if they have not yet done so.”