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Is it necessary to give rotavirus vaccine to children?

Q: I have come to know that rotavirus has infected a lot of children all over Northern India and is now spreading to South. Although rotavirus infection is not uncommon, is it becoming an epidemic? Should I give the vaccination immediately to my children? Is there a reason for alarm?

A:Rotavirus infections are the single largest cause of severe diarrhoeal disease among infants and children worldwide and claims more than 5 lakh children every year, and another two million are hospitalised. Most deaths occur in developing countries where access to treatment is limited. However, nearly every child in the world will suffer a rotavirus infection before age five. There are no rumours or recent reports about an outbreak / epidemic, and there is no cause for alarm. However, you should vaccinate your child, if you can afford to.

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