If you’d been asked in December 2019 to predict POZ’s top HIV news story of 2020, you’d probably guess incorrectly, even though the massive subject accounted for over 12 of the top 20 HIV news stories of 2020.
Topics such as HIV treatment and HIV cure research remained popular throughout the year, but the main headline grabber of 2020 didn’t even have a name until February 11. That’s when the World Health Organization announced COVID-19 as the name of the disease caused by the new coronavirus. On the same day, an international team of scientists said the virus would be called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, or SARS-CoV-2.
Within a few weeks of that February announcement, COVID-19 struck the United States hard, beginning with New York and Washington state, before spreading across the nation and taking nearly 350,000 lives by year’s end.
As the scientific community grappled with understanding this new disease, people living with HIV wanted to know how it affected them—were they at higher risk of contracting it or experiencing worse symptoms? Such concerns led to our top HIV news story as well as updated items like this Ask POZ column from December and our July/August cover story, “COVID-19 and HIV: What You Need to Know.” You can read a collection of all our related coverage by searching the hashtag #COVID-19.
The pandemic disrupted many aspects of our lives, including access to HIV care and treatment. In response to shutdowns and stay-at-home orders, many service providers turned to telehealth (and Zoom!), meaning the use of cell phones and computers to communicate with health care providers. The year’s biggest HIV conferences, both nationally and globally, also pivoted to virtual formats.
As you can see from the top 20 list below, other HIV news did catch our readers’ eyes—notably reports about HIV cure advances and remembrances of those we lost throughout the year.
Hmm…anyone want to guess what the top HIV news stories will be for 2021?
While you ponder that, below are the POZ news stories with the most views this year:
1. We Are Seeing Few Cases of HIV-Positive People With Severe COVID-19
Posted: April 13
2. Was the New Coronavirus (COVID-19) Created in a Lab Using HIV Genes?
Posted: February 5
3. Can a Single Vaccine Injection Functionally Cure HIV?
Posted: November 3
4. An Easy Way to Stay Updated on HIV Crime Bills Across the Country
Posted: July 29
5. 3 Reasons COVID-19 Poses a Higher Risk to the LGBTQ Population
Posted: March 16
6. 10 Years After the Affordable Care Act, More Latinos Have Health Insurance
Posted: March 6
7. Will People With HIV Be Excluded From COVID-19 Vaccine Trials?
Posted: August 6
8. TV Preacher Jim Bakker Suggests His $125 Product Kills Coronavirus (COVID-19) and HIV
Posted: February 13
9. ’Breakthrough Finding’ Reveals Why Certain COVID Patients Die
Posted: November 21
10. COVID-19 Advice for People With HIV From the Experts Who Know
Posted: March 24
11. Losing Your Virginity and Defining Healthy Love [VIDEO]
Posted: May 8
12. Could People With AIDS Be Denied Ventilators for COVID-19?
Posted: March 25
13. ’13 Reasons Why’ Ends on a ’Potentially Traumatic’ HIV Twist
Posted: June 10
14. Good News for Those Who Missed AIDS 2020: Virtual
Posted: August 21
15. R.I.P. Garry Bowie; the HIV Activist and Nonprofit Leader Died of COVID-19
Posted: April 16
16. Timothy Ray Brown, the First Man Cured of HIV, Dies at Age 54
Posted: September 30
17. Meet the 2nd Person Cured of HIV, aka the ’London Patient’
Posted: March 9
18. And Now the World Faces a Condom Shortage Because of COVID-19
Posted: April 1
19. R.I.P. Deloris Dockrey, HIV Activist and Leader Lost to COVID-19
Posted: April 28
20. People With COVID-19 Unite to Document Recovery
Posted: May 14