As a non medic with a site which does not give medical advice, I have been asking questions of our doctors and scientists about the scope for better treatments for those who have caught CV 19, and for anything which people can take which might reduce their chances of getting a bad version of the disease.
I am glad to report more progress in the UK on how to handle this virus. The NHS now says that taking Vitamin D supplements over the winter may be helpful . It has announced free Vitamin D supplies to those on the at risk register for the pandemic. They will have received letters advising them to be careful. They can apply for Vitamin D supplements on the NHS. This vitamin I read can buttress the immune system needed to fight off infection.
Some time ago the UK made an important breakthrough, identifying some corticosteroids as a suitable hospital or prescription treatment for those with the infection. In an important minority of cases it speeded recovery and lessened the impact of the disease.
This week the NHS has also confirmed trials saying that Tocilizumat, an anti rheumatoid arthritis drug commonly available in hospitals can also reduce the time the disease lasts in a patient and reduces the severity. Other anti rheumatoids may have similar properties. This again increases the armoury of doctors fighting the worst cases of the disease and gives hope that more will survive.
The UK has not found chloroquine to live up to early expectations of some that it could cut the death rate. Regeneron has been given an emergency licence in the USA for doctors to use in a limited number of circumstances. Some overseas doctors recommend Ivermectin which is said to reduce the death rate. We await more news of the UK testing of this medicine.
It is good news that trial work is continuing and some of the drugs tried can help reduce the time people spend in hospital before recovering and can help cut the death rate. I will continue to press Ministers to encourage this important work.