Open letter to Lancet Editor about COVID

March, 2020

Dear Richard Horton,

In 1998 you wrote, “When the state of the health of the people is at stake, we should be prepared to take action to diminish these risks even when the scientific knowledge is not conclusive.” [1]

Nothing is proven to work against COVID-19, because it is a new virus. But vitamin C has worked against every single virus including influenzas, pneumonia, and even poliomyelitis. Intravenous vitamin C works in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, as in all forms of sepsis [2]. Reports are starting to confirm that it does so in Covid-19 induced ARDS. Both effects are dose-dependent.

Vitamin D also protects against respiratory infections and mitigates ARDS [3]. Both effects are stronger in those who are vitamin D deficient, which at this time of year is most of us.

The Orthomolecular News Service has been reporting on this for 2 months now. All the scientific data is available on their website [4].

Yet governments call for “robust evidence”, and Facebook blocks postings reporting this, while people die preventable deaths. Our frontline colleagues are at particular risk. By acting now we can save health workers’ lives.

Will you please call on the government to take the following steps immediately:

  • Recognise these facts and inform the public
  • Factor these nutrients into the public health measures now in place
  • Ensure supply of Vitamin C in particular by increasing production and distribution.

Dr Damien Downing MBBS MRSB President, British Society for Ecological Medicine

  1. Horton R. (1998) The new public health of risk and radical engagement. Lancet. 352(9124):251-2.

  2. Li, J. (2018). Evidence is stronger than you think : a meta-analysis of vitamin C use in patients with sepsis. Critical Care, 22(258), 1–4.

  3. Dancer, R. C. A., Parekh, D., Lax, S., et al (2015). Vitamin D deficiency contributes directly to the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Thorax, 70(7), 617–624.

  4. Orthomolecular Medicine News Service