Gauteng health dismisses rotavirus outbreak rumours


The Gauteng Department of Health would like to dispel any rumours of Rotavirus outbreak in the province.

This follows a statement that was issued claiming that hospitals in Gauteng have had an increased incidence of babies with gastroenteritis despite having taken the Rotavirus vaccination that should have prevented this.

Rotavirus vaccine works only against the Rotavirus. Rotavirus is not the only cause of childhood gastroenteritis. Other causes include changes from liquid to solid foods, food allergy, bacterial and viral infections including HIV.

While it is true that Rotavirus is the leading cause of severe diarrhoea worldwide, studies that have been carried out by NICD have shown a marked reduction in Rotavirus-related gastroenteritis in the country.

Since Rotavirus is not the only cause of gastroenteritis in children, it is possible for a child to have gastroenteritis even though they have been immunised against Rotavirus which is administered at six and 14 weeks.

This story was sourced from the Government Communication and Information Centre, Republic of South Africa website.


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