Rates of gastroenteritis hospitalization in children aged <5 years old decreased by 31% to 55% in each of the post-vaccine years from 2008–2012, according to a new study published in JAMA.

A team from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) evaluated all-cause gastroenteritis and rotavirus-related hospitalizations among children aged <5 years old from 2000–2012. Data was collected from the State Inpatient Databases of the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project, which reflects hospitalizations in both community and academic hospital.

Of the 1,201,458 total all-cause acute gastroenteritis hospitalizations among children aged <5 years, 17% (n=199,812) were assigned a rotavirus-specific code. Compared with the pre-vaccine average annual acute gastroenteritis hospitalization rate of 76/10,000 among children aged <5 years, post-vaccine introduction rates decreased by 31% in 2008, 33% in 2009, 48% in 2010, 47% in 2011, and 55% in 2012. The decline in rates were observed in across both genders, all race/ethnicity groups, and all age groups; the greatest decline was seen among children aged 6–23 months.

RELATED: Widespread Rotavirus Vaccination Can Cut Infection Rates

The rates of rotavirus-coded hospitalizations post-vaccine introduction decreased by 70% in 2008, 63% in 2009, 90% in 2010, 79% in 2011, and 94% in 2012, compared with the pre-vaccine average rate in children aged <5 years old. The estimated rotavirus vaccination coverage among children aged 19–35 months old hit 69% vs. 44% to 67% seen during 2009–2011. The increased vaccine coverage and herd protection may explain the larger declines in rotavirus hospitalizations, researchers concluded.

For more information visit JAMANetwork.com.