All adults recommended to take Vitamin D supplement to increase protection from Covid-19
A new report said Vitamin D is not a cure for Covid-19 but evidence suggests it can prevent more severe symptoms.
The Oireachtas Health Committee has recommended all adults in Ireland should take a daily Vitamin D supplement due to growing international evidence that it may help to prevent the severity of Covid-19 outbreaks.
It comes as evidence was presented to the committee regarding links between Vitamin D deficiency and more severe symptoms of Covid-19.
The report, published on Wednesday morning, was the result of a cross-party Oireachtas Committee on Health as part of an ongoing review of the Covid-19 situation in Ireland.
It is based on evidence provided to the committee by experts from Trinity College Dublin, St. James’s Hospital and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.
The report said that Vitamin D is not a cure for Covid-19 but there was increasing international evidence from Finland, France and Spain that high levels of Vitamin D can help to reduce the impact of Covid-19.
It found that Vitamin D deficiency is common across all age groups in Ireland, from 47% of 19-39-year olds to 64% of over 80s.
Recommendations from the report include that a daily Vitamin D supplement of 20-25µg/day be recommended to the entire adult population as well. The government were also called to reduce or eliminate the VAT on Vitamin D supplements.
- Daily Vitamin D supplements of 20-25μg/day (800–1000 IU/day) should be recommended to the entire adult population, where possible and where medically appropriate, as a public health measure to reduce the risk of respiratory and other illnesses such as osteoporosis.
- A public health policy to increase knowledge and encourage increased intake of Vitamin D through supplementation should be developed in time for consideration for Budget 2022.
- To reduce the cost of Vitamin D supplementation and to promote its uptake, the Government should reconsider the current VAT applied, with a view to either reducing or preferably eliminating it.
- Specific measures need to be put in place for vulnerable groups, especially nursing home residents and those who are in confined settings, such as prisons; and for frontline and healthcare workers. For these groups, provision of Vitamin D should be administered on an opt-out basis. Additionally, for the duration of this pandemic, those attending Covid- 19 test centres should be offered Vitamin D supplements on presentation for their Covid-19 test.