BCG vaccination and COVID-19: conflicting results (search done on 2 May 2020)

Added July 22, 2020

Citation: Riccò M, Gualerzi G, Ranzieri S, et al. Stop playing with data: there is no sound evidence that Bacille Calmette-Guérin may avoid SARS-CoV-2 infection (for now). Acta Biomedica. 2020 May 11;91(2):207-13.

What is this? Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccination has been proposed as a potential preventative or therapeutic measure against COVID-19.

In this rapid review, the authors searched for studies on the association between BCG vaccination and incidence and deaths from COVID-19. They restricted their search to articles published in Italian, English, German, French or Spanish and did the search on 2 May 2020. They included 13 studies, of which 12 were pre-prints. All were ecological studies of low quality.

What was found: At the time of this review, the included studies showed conflicting results on the association between BCG vaccination and COVID-19.


Disclaimer: This summary has been written by staff and volunteers of Evidence Aid in order to make the content of the original document accessible to decision makers who are searching for the available evidence on the coronavirus (COVID-19) but may not have the time, initially, to read the original report in full. This summary is not intended as a substitute for the medical advice of physicians, other health workers, professional associations, guideline developers, or national governments and international agencies. If readers of this summary think that the evidence that is presented within it is relevant to their decision-making they should refer to the content and details of the original article, and the advice and guidelines offered by other sources of expertise, before making decisions. Evidence Aid cannot be held responsible for any decisions made about the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the basis of this summary alone.