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A Message To Our Readers


As of the new year, will be transferred to Smart + Strong, the publisher of POZ, Hep, Real Health, and the new Cancer Health magazines and websites. will remain online as an archive for the near future but will not publish new content. editor Liz Highleyman is now editor-in-chief of Cancer Health.

The HIV and viral hepatitis fields have undergone a remarkable evolution since Ronald Baker founded in the late 1990s. Combination antiretroviral therapy had started to reduce mortality and many people with HIV began to regain their health. But the new drug "cocktails" were often hard to take, caused difficult side effects, and did not work for many people with long-term infection and extensive treatment experience. Treatment for hepatitis C typically involved a year-long course of interferon-based therapy which also came with challenging side effects and only cured the disease about half the time.

Today, most people living with HIV can be effectively treated with a single, well-tolerated daily pill, and those who start treatment promptly have a life expectancy matching that of HIV-negative people -- and a daily pill can now prevent HIV infection in the first place. Almost everyone with hepatitis C -- including formerly "hard to treat" people such as those with HIV/HCV coinfection -- can be cured with 2 or 3 months of well-tolerated direct-acting antivirals.

But the availability of effective new therapies does not mean access. Many people living with HIV and viral hepatitis -- both in the U.S. and worldwide -- have not yet been diagnosed or are not receiving treatment for reasons including ongoing stigma, criminalization, and the high cost of new drugs.

Cancer, too, appears to be on the brink of a breakthrough. New immunotherapies -- some of them based on advances in immunology pioneered by HIV researchers -- are starting to offer some people with cancer a new lease on life. But they do not yet work for all patients or all types of cancer, and their high cost will likely require new models of health care financing.

You can turn to POZ and Hep for the latest HIV and hepatitis news and conference coverage. Liz will continue to provide conference coverage for NAM's aidsmap and infohep, as well as San Francisco HIV news for the Bay Area Reporter. The @HIVandHepatitis Twitter account will become @HealthEdOnline, touching on a broader range of health topics.

Thank you for your interest in over the years. Thanks also to all our contributors, especially our content collaborators at NAM.

Best Wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year!

-Liz Highleyman