Global Burden

Global Rotavirus Deaths

Rotavirus kills about 200,000 children each year and hospitalizes hundreds of thousands more 1, 2. Prior to vaccine introduction, almost every child was infected with rotavirus before age 5, regardless of where they lived.

Figure: The Countries with the Greatest Number of Rotavirus Deaths as a Proportion of All Global Rotavirus Deaths in Children under 5 (2017)3

Figure: Rates of Rotavirus Mortality per 100,000 Children under Age 5 in 2017, By Country3

Global Hospitalization Rates

Figure: Percentage of diarrheal disease hospitalizations in children <5 caused by rotavirus in WHO surveillance countries that have not introduced rotavirus vaccine (2018)4

  • Uganda 30% 30%
  • Nigeria 36% 36%
  • Benin 29% 29%
  • Myanmar 43% 43%
  • Lao People’s Democratic Republic 47% 47%
  • Vietnam 39% 39%
  • Cambodia 50% 50%
  • Mongolia 38% 38%
  • China 24% 24%
  • Papua New Guinea 11% 11%
  • Azerbaijan 15% 15%
  • Ukraine 37% 37%

For more information, check out The Epidemiology and Disease Burden of Rotavirus brief.


1. Tate, J.E., et al., Global, Regional, and National Estimates of Rotavirus Mortality in Children <5 Years of Age, 2000-2013. Clin Infect Dis, 2016. 62 Suppl 2: p. S96-s105.

2. Parashar, U.D., et al., Global illness and deaths caused by rotavirus disease in children. Emerg Infect Dis, 2003. 9(5): p. 565-72.

3. Global Burden of Disease Collaborative Network. Global Burden of Disease Study 2017 (GBD 2017) Results. Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) 2018 2018; Available from:

4.WHO, Global Rotavirus Information and Surveillance Bulletin. 2018.


The ROTA Council was created in collaboration with an advisory group of 24 child health leaders from around the world. We promote the use of rotavirus vaccines as part of a comprehensive approach to addressing diarrheal disease.

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