VICE Media Rolls Out Health-Focused Digital Channel


BROOKLYN: VICE Media is launching Tonic, a brand-new digital channel dedicated to health, wellness and advances in medical science.

Tonic marks the 13th digital channel from VICE. The channel targets young people and strives to share news relating to health in an accessible way. Beginning this week, Tonic will roll out new editorial and video content, including in-depth profiles, recurring columns and daily features.

The channel will present Hepatitis Country, a long-form documentary that looks at the unprecedented rise in Hepatitis C diagnoses in West Virginia. The series Doctor Confessions will feature doctors from across the country who share accounts of life-and-death situations in the E.R. Asking for a Friend, meanwhile, will provide answers to the pressing health questions that most people are too afraid to ask. Next month on World AIDS day, Tonic will debut a brand-new documentary exploring why the chances of getting HIV for gay, black men in America is still one in two.

Tonic is launching with partners that include Sutter Health, Unilever’s Degree and Oscar Health, among others. Pulitzer Prize-winning author and physician Siddhartha Mukherjee will serve as the site’s editor-at-large, and VICE co-president Andrew Creighton will be the publisher for the site. Mike Darling is joining the team as the channel’s managing editor, while health and culture writer Rajul Punjabi occupies the role of VICE’s wellness editor.

“There’s no topic more important than health, but when we surveyed our audience, we found that only 13 percent of millennials feel comfortable about managing their own health,” said Creighton. “We want Tonic to be a trusted source that can help inform young people on their journey through life with incisive storytelling and in-depth reporting on the big-picture social, policy, technological and environmental factors that affect our well-being. If we can do this, we’ve succeeded.”

“Anyone who has ever been to a hospital, tried to get in shape, or attempted to navigate our byzantine healthcare system knows that the pursuit of health is at best an imperfect process,” said Kate Lowenstein, the editor-in-chief of Tonic. “Tonic will acknowledge this with frank, informative stories about both personal health and also the big-picture issues.”