Rotavac Current Affairs - 2020

ROTAVAC Vaccine to be expand to entire country

Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has decided to expand Rotavirus vaccine to the entire country from September 2019. It will provide Rotavirus vaccine to every child across all 36 states/UTs by September, 2019. This decision was taken as per an ambitious plan of Health Ministry under the 100-days agenda of the newly elected government.


Out of all the causes of diarrhoea in India, rotavirus is a leading cause of diarrhoea in children less than 5 years of age. In India, every year there are 37 diarrheal deaths out of every 1000 children. It is estimated that rotavirus cause around 8 lakh hospitalizations; 32 lakh outpatient visits and estimated 78 thousand deaths annually in India.

Rotavirus diarrhoea presents in similar manner like any other diarrhoea but can easily prevented through rotavirus vaccination. Other diarrhoea can be prevented through general measures such as safe water and safe food consumption, good hygiene, frequent hand washing, exclusive breastfeeding as well as vitamin A supplementation.

About Rotavac

It is India’s first indigenously developed vaccine for rotavirus infections. It has been developed by the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech Limited.

It was introduced in 2016 in phased manner, beginning with 4 states initially. At present, Rotavirus vaccine is now available in 28 States/UTs.

It was included in Universal Immunization Programme (UIP) based on recommendation of expert committee National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI).

UIP: 3 doses of rotavirus vaccine are provided along with other vaccines, free of cost under UIP at one and half month, two and half moth, and three and half month of age of child.

WHO Pre-qualification: In January 2018, World Health Organisation (WHO) had prequalified Rotavac vaccine i.e. it can be sold internationally to several countries in Africa and South America.

Gagandeep Kang: She had played key role development of Rotavac and for this she awarded Fellowship of the Royal Society (FRS), United Kingdom in April 2019, making her first Indian woman to be awarded this highest scientific recognition.

Gagandeep Kang awarded Fellowship of the Royal Society (FRS), UK

Gagandeep Kang becomes first Indian woman scientist to be awarded Fellowship of the Royal Society (FRS), United Kingdom.

Gagandeep Kang

  • She is a clinician scientist, who is well known for her key role in development of Rotavac. She currently appointed as executive director of Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI), Faridabad, which is an autonomous institute of Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology.
  • In 2016, she was conferred prestigious Infosys Prize in Life Sciences for her contributions in understanding natural history of rotavirus and other infectious diseases.
  • She is also first Indian and first woman to edit Manson’s Textbook of Tropical Medicine.


It is India’s first indigenously developed vaccine for rotavirus infections, which is responsible for childhood diarrhea. The Rotavac was developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech Limited and Pune-based Serum International also developed a rotavirus vaccine called Rabishield. Both of them are included in India’s Immunisation Programme.

In January 2018, World Health Organisation (WHO) “pre-qualified” the Rotavac vaccine, which means that vaccine could be sold internationally to other countries in Africa and South America.

Fellowship of the Royal Society

It is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence since 1663. It is an award sponsored by Royal Society of London and also known as FRS, ForMemRS and HonFRS. It is granted to individuals who made substantial contribution to improvement of natural knowledge in fields of natural knowledge, including mathematics, engineering science, and medical science.

It has been awarded to many eminent scientists approximately 8000 in total with 1675 living right now, including Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin, Michael Faraday, Ernest Rutherford, Srinivasa Ramanujan, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill etc.