A copy of my letter written to M.P David Rutley on 20th September…
I bring this to your attention with a request to PLEASE raise this urgently at Parliament for the sake of the NHS and the nation’s health as we head into the Autumn and Winter months and face diminishing levels of Vitamin D.
I am a research scientist of more than 20 years, having worked in biomedical genetics at AstraZeneca and The University Of Birmingham and now an independent, self employed, science led, functional medicine practitioner and reflexologist, keeping up to date with research as it emerges.
There is good quality compelling research from around the globe of the importance of Vitamin D in relation to covid19 outcomes.Indeed a recent Spanish pilot clinical study of 76 covid patients, showed that of the 2/3 of patients given high dose vitamin D as well as standard of care on admission to hospital, only 2% required intensive care (ICU) admission and there were no deaths. Of the 1/3 of patients given standard of care but no vitamin D, 50% required ICU and there were 7.5% deaths in this group. This result is statistically significant and warrants further good quality, well designed clinical studies URGENTLY. Please see a summary of this research here by Dr John Campbell
In the meantime, why await a trial when VITAMIN D CAN BE SAFELY ADMINISTERED TO PATIENTS ON ADMISSION TO MITIGATE THE RISK AND COSTS OF ICU ADMISSIONS AND DEATH. This is a safe, simple, inexpensive intervention that can be adopted immediately and policy makers have a duty of care to act upon this to make this standard practice.
Additionally daily Vitamin D intake recommendations from Public Health England fall short of sufficient for overcoming Vitamin D deficiency and do not recognise the immune protection effects of Vitamin D, simply only citing bone health effects; Vitamin D status in the UK is poor when compared to our European counterparts for example Sweden.
Further studies from around the globe are described here and some earlier studies here . I am concerned about the quality of science that NICE performed in their urgent review of vitamin D and covid outcomes a few months ago, without taking into account the many global studies. For 3 out of 5 of their studies they evaluated vitamin D status from many years ago with covid outcomes in patients this year. It is unsurprising that they found no correlation of vitamin D with covid outcomes, since Vitamin D status decades ago will bear no resemblance to their vitamin D status this year. PHE also conducted an urgent review of vitamin D status with respiratory infections, following a meta analysis of clinical studies published in 2017 showing Vitamin D to have a protective effect against respiratory infections .
A meta analysis is the gold standard study carrying the highest level of evidence available and yet PHE took it upon itself to do its own rapid research of studies post 2017. It selected a hotch potch of different sized studies of varying levels of Vitamin D status and doses and failed to weight the studies on their level of evidence citing they did not have enough time and not taking into account the previous highest level of evidence meta analysis available. PHE conclusions were hence somewhat misleading and their study seemed incomplete.
I write regularly for the Macclesfield Local People Magazine raising awareness on matters related to health and in March this year (when I had contracted coronavirus myself) I wrote of factors which can support us through this pandemic, including vitamin D and indeed am sure it is one of the factors that has helped me to recover.
Of course death is not the only outcome of this pandemic. Long covid is an emerging and very real phenomenon with tens of thousands of people who are suffering 6 months post infection with debilitating effects of chronic fatigue, shortness of breath, intermittent memory loss, risk of blood clotting to name a few. This will have enormous economic impact if it is not addressed and it is possible that vitamin D may play a role in this also.
Prof Steve Jones, the evolutionary geneticist, talked only last year at the Bollington Festival, of the health impacts of the pandemic of Vitamin D deficiency that we have in much of the UK, particularly areas north of the Midlands which of course includes Cheshire East. It is interesting that many of the areas showing covid-19 spikes leading to local lockdowns appear to indeed be in the north.
I am keen to make a difference and feel that reaching out to you to raise these points in parliament and for policy makers is extremely necessary. I am keen to hear of the outcomes of discussions and happy to discuss further.
Kind Regards,Tracy Mills