Rotavirus cases drop thanks to vaccine

Figures published by Public Health England have shown that the number of diagnosed rotavirus cases have dropped by 84 per cent since the introduction of a vaccine to the national childhood immunisation schedule in July 2013.

The vaccine, which is given to babies at the age of two and three months, protects against the virus that particularly affects babies and young children under five years, causing bouts of diarrhoea, sometimes with vomiting, stomach ache and fever.

Before the vaccination was introduced, around 14,000 children were admitted to hospital each year as a result of the virus because of complications such as extreme dehydration.

The Department of Health has confirmed that GSK’s rotavirus vaccine, Rotarix, which was offered to babies for an initial period of three years, will continue to be part of the national childhood immunisation programme.

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