A recent article at WebMD reviews the reported success of the Rotavirus vaccine, RotaTeq. Rotavirus is a GI virus that causes diarrhea and is responsible for serious complications, hospitalizations, and death in infants throughout the world.
A recent joint meeting of the American Society for Microbiology and the Infectious Diseases Society of America presented the findings of several studies that pointed to a significant reduction in the number of infant deaths related to the Rotavirus since the vaccine became available for regular use.
Reported reductions in deaths and major complications range from 66% to 100%. Prior to the production of the vaccine the studies reported some of the following statistics on the the effects of the Rotavirus:
- No. 1 cause of diarrhea-related hospitalizations and deaths in babies and young children
- Responsible for about 400,000 physician visits, more than 200,000 emergency room visits, up to 70,000 hospital admissions, and 60 deaths every year in the U.S. alone
- Causes 2 million hospitalizations worldwide annually
- Blamed for nearly half a million deaths annually in children under 5 years.
If you are involved in infant or pediatric care, review the availability of this vaccine and be prepared to educate parents and caregivers about the benefits of protecting their children from serious child illnesses.