Vitamin D supplementation in elderly care home residents is largely viewed as a “medicine” rather than a protective nutrient, risking vitamin D deficiency in this particularly vulnerable population, say British public health scientists.
Writing in BMJ Nutrition Prevention & Health, they stress an urgent review is needed of the nutritional guidelines and regulations in England on the use of the vitamin in elderly residential care homes.
Vitamin D supplementation “needs a professional separation from medicine and reframing as a matter of public health nutrition as well as a medical responsibility,” emphasizes Joe Williams, MSc Public Health graduate, Brighton University, UK, and colleagues.
The findings reveal “both a failure to implement evidence-based recommendations and a social injustice in urgent need of public health advocacy and resolution,” they emphasize.
For 30 years, vitamin D 10 µg as a daily supplement has been endorsed for care home residents. In 2016, the recommendations