NHS England is consulting on proposals that will stop routine prescribing in primary care of over the counter treatments for a number of conditions, including the maintenance use of vitamin D. Receiving adequate vitamin D intake is crucial for current and future bone health and NICE Public Health Guideline 562 (PH56) states that a licensed dose of vitamin D, for prevention of vitamin D deficiency, should be widely available to at-risk groups.

The consultation recognises that vitamin D should continue to be prescribed for patients who are deficient and that it can be prescribed in combination with calcium for osteoporosis. However, vitamin D for maintenance is subject to restrictions and there is a risk that at-risk patients, may not purchasing it themselves (due to cost, accessibility or lifestyle reasons) or purchase a product which is inappropriate for their needs (due to ingredients or dosing levels). If you are going to respond to this consultation, consider raising the issue of availability of a licenced dose of vitamin D on prescription among at-risk patients. Let us know if you are responding.

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