COVID19 quick updates, October 27, 2020: more on vitamin D; remdesivir skepticism; good news from Israel

(1) (hat tip: Jeff Duntemann). A Spanish study on vitamin D and COVID19 was just accepted for publication in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. https://doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgaa733

In short: there is a very strong statistical link between COVID19 infection and vitamin D deficiency — but once it gets bad enough you’re in hospital, there is no significant difference in progress of the disease between deficient and non-deficient patients.

(2) Jeff also points to a post on climate skeptic website Watts Up With That, which completely takes apart the study supporting the effectiveness of remdesivir.

(3) Good news from Israel, where Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem was able to close down two of its four COVID19 wards. Severe cases nationwide have dropped to a bit over half the peak figure, and positivity rates in tests are now in the 2% range, down from 15% at the peak.

The Jerusalem Post reports that Prof. Ronni Gamzu will step down as COVID19 commissioner in November and be replaced by former IDF Surgeon-General Nachman Ash, who will start transitioning into his new role tomorrow. Gamzu was on leave of absence from his job as Director-General of Sourasky Medical Center (still known to Israelis by its old name Ichilov Hospital), and apparently had previously committed to returning on November 13.

Also, the Brilife vaccine developed by the Israel Institute for Biological Research will start clinical trials next week.

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