Elderly and vulnerable will get free Vitamin D from government
Millions of elderly and vulnerable will get free Vitamin D from government as evidence grows that it helps in battle against Covid-19
- People shielding will be sent enough supplies of the vitamin to last four months
- It comes after Matt Hancock decided to act fast due to evidence about benefits
- Study found 80 per cent of Covid-19 victims in hospital were Vitamin D deficient
Millions of vulnerable people will be sent supplies of Vitamin D by the Government as evidence grows that it helps in the battle against Covid-19 infection.
Care-home residents and people shielding because they suffer from conditions such as cancer will be sent enough supplies of the vitamin to last four months, with the first packages due to arrive early next month.
The move comes after Health Secretary Matt Hancock decided he had to act fast in light of the emerging evidence about the benefits of Vitamin D.
Care-home residents and people shielding because they suffer from conditions such as cancer will be sent enough supplies of the vitamin to last four months, with the first packages due to arrive early next month (file photo)
One recent study found that more than 80 per cent of Covid-19 victims admitted to hospital were Vitamin D deficient, compared with a UK average of 25 per cent.
Ministers are hoping that greater uptake of the vitamin, along with more effective drug treatments and a viable vaccine, will combine to remove the need for an endless series of rolling lockdowns.
A senior Government source said that direct delivery to people’s doorsteps in England would ‘help prevent Vitamin D deficiency and maintain normal calcium levels in the blood and keep bones and muscles healthy’.
The source added: ‘We are going to ensure those most in need of Vitamin D can access a supply to last them throughout winter. There are a number of studies that suggest Vitamin D supplementation could have a positive impact for people suffering with Covid-19.’
The move comes after Health Secretary Matt Hancock decided he had to act fast in light of the emerging evidence about the benefits of Vitamin D
The move will be accompanied by the start of clinical trials to further assess links between Vitamin D and Covid-19.
Those who will receive free supplies include organ-transplant recipients, chemotherapy patients and those with severe respiratory conditions such as cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Vitamin D is a hormone produced by the kidneys which controls blood calcium concentration and has a direct impact on the body’s immune system.
Some experts have suggested that the higher rates of serious Covid-19 complications in patients from ethnic minorities could be due to the lower levels of Vitamin D they are able to synthesise from sunlight.
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