Rotavirus vaccine


Rotavirus is a major public health problem, accounting for significant morbidity and hospital admissions in the developed world and childhood mortality in the developing world.


A vaccine was introduced into the NHS immunisation programme in 2013. The key points to remember as as follows:
  • it is an oral, live attenuated vaccine
  • 2 doses are required, the first at 2 months, the second at 3 months
  • the first dose should not be given after 14 weeks + 6 days and the second dose cannot be given after 23 weeks + 6 days due to a theoretical risk of intussusception

Other points
  • the vaccine is around 85-90% effective and is predicted to decrease hospitalisation by 70%
  • offers long-term protection against rotavirus