Prevention of COVID-19 with high dose Oral Vitamin D supplemental Therapy in Essential healthCare Teams (PROTECT)

  • Funded by Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
  • Total publications:2 publications

Grant number: 172650

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Key facts

  • Disease

  • Start & end year

  • Known Financial Commitments (USD)

  • Funder

    Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
  • Principle Investigator

  • Research Location

    Canada, Americas
  • Lead Research Institution

    Centre hospitalier universitaire Sainte-Justine (Montréal, Québec) Pediatrics
  • Research Category

    Therapeutics research, development and implementation

  • Research Subcategory

    Prophylactic use of treatments

  • Special Interest Tags


  • Study Subject


  • Clinical Trial Details

    Randomized Controlled Trial

  • Broad Policy Alignment


  • Age Group

    Adults (18 and older)

  • Vulnerable Population


  • Occupations of Interest

    Health Personnel


During the COVID-19 pandemic, despite personnel protection equipment, healthcare workers are 10 times more likely to contract the infection due to their exposure to patients and co-workers with unknown or confirmed COVID19 infection. Any one withdrawn due to infection has an amplified negative impact on care delivery, further increasing the burden on those remaining and on our healthcare system. Studies have shown that Vitamin D supplementation decreases the risk of common respiratory illnesses by about 20%, particularly in those with lower vitamin D levels. Lower Vitamin D levels is a common occurrence among Canadians, particularly in the fall and winter, that is, at the expected of the second wave of infection. Whether high-dose vitamin supplementation can help decrease the risk of COVID 19 infection in health care workers is yet to determined. In this 16-week randomized clinical trial to be started in September 2020, 2414 healthcare workers in the greater Montreal area will be allocated by chance to receive: (i) a high bolus dose of vitamin D followed by weekly doses of vitamin D or (ii) placebo bolus and placebo weekly dose, for 16 weeks. Every two weeks, participants will perform a nasal swab to be send to analysis. This study will examine whether healthcare workers receiving vitamin D have a lower risk of COVID-19 infection, milder infection, and/ or a shorter infection duration, compared to the control group. If vitamin D proves effective to decrease COVID 19 infections, severity, and duration, it may be the cheapest, most easily applicable approach (in addition to social distancing and personal prevention equipment) to prevent COVID-19 infection in at-risk healthcare workers. If the benefit also translates in fewer and shorter withdrawals from the workforce, it may consubstantially reduce the burden on healthcare system and ensuring sufficient healthcare workforce to better tackle the current pandemic.

Publicationslinked via Europe PMC

Last Updated:39 minutes ago

View all publications at Europe PMC

Effects of Vitamin D Supplementation on COVID-19 Related Outcomes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

A drop-in centre for treating mental health problems in children with chronic illness: Outcomes for parents and their relationship with child outcomes.