Large doses of vitamin C are being administered to patients in intensive care at certain hospitals in New York, Newsweek has confirmed with a spokesperson for Northwell Health.

They confirmed reports that patients testing positive with COVID-19 were in some cases being treated with large doses of vitamin C—among other drugs—at their clinics.

The antioxidant is being administered intravenously in quantities far exceeding the daily recommended dose, which is 90 milligrams for men and 75 milligrams for women as recommended by the National Institutes of Health.

Fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin A and D, can be quite toxic at high doses, but vitamin C is reasonably safe as it is easily excreted, Peter McCaffery, Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Aberdeen in the U.K., told Newsweek. It is also known that intravenous vitamin C is relatively safe when applied under clinical supervision, McCaffery added.

“I have to hope that this, or any new idea, may help,” McCaffery said. “Just to reiterate though, taking large doses of vitamin C tablets would be very unlikely to protect you from COVID-19—unless you were actually vitamin C deficient, which with a normal diet is quite rare.

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