Trending conversations falsely claim that federal officials covered up research into the benefits of vitamin D to treat COVID-19, resulting in a higher death toll. The posts misuse a publication by New Zealand's chief science advisor in June 2020, which initially linked vitamin D deficiency to severe COVID-19 outcomes and fatalities. According to these narratives, the publication was allegedly removed as part of a lockdown conspiracy to limit people’s access to vitamin D and to promote vaccines as the primary solution for combating COVID-19.
Risk level: Low
Recommendation: Because this false information is spreading mostly among extreme vaccine opponents, it’s unlikely for patients to repeat these exact claims in a clinical setting. However, doctors and other health care providers may face questions about the role of natural remedies like Vitamin D. Talking points may emphasize that while vitamin D can help immune systems, it cannot prevent or treat diseases like COVID-19.